Error-Based Teaching Approach Decreases Vessel Anastomosis Errors: A Pilot Study
Journal of Reconstructive Microsurgery Open
Background Microsurgical anastomosis of vessels is a challenging skill that surgical residents should practice on models before attempting in the clinical setting. These skills are often taught using synthetic materials, animal tissue, or live animal models. With increasing constraints on surgical resident's time, it is important to maximize efficiency of microsurgical training. The purpose of this study is to determine if teaching surgical residents about common vessel anastomosis errors
... ses the total number of suture errors during a 4-day training course. Methods Plastic surgery residents (R1–R3) were randomly assigned to receive additional teaching focused on either common microsurgical errors or traditional microsurgical manuals. The residents then performed anastomosis on rat femoral arteries in which the total number of sutures and errors were recorded by staff microsurgeons who were blinded to the intervention. Results Residents who received teaching on common microsurgical errors performed a total of 73 sutures of which 12 were errors. The control group who studied using traditional microsurgical manuals performed a total of 125 sutures of which 38 were errors. There was a statistically significant decrease in the total number of suture errors (Fisher's exact test; p-value = 0.04) and in the number of partial depth bite errors (Fisher's exact test p-value = 0.03). Conclusion Teaching surgical residents about common vessel anastomosis errors decreased the total number of errors when compared with traditional education methods using microsurgery manuals. Partial depth bite errors were also decreased through error-based teaching.