Dolan RD, Ryou M. Endoscopic simulators: training the next generation. Curr Opin Gastroenterol. 2021 Nov 1;37(6):589-595

PMID: 34482322


Purpose of review: To provide a review of current evidence evaluating endoscopic simulators as teaching platforms in gastroenterology training, with emphasis on upper gastrointestinal anatomy.

Recent findings: Endoscopic simulators have leveraged mechanical, virtual reality and ex-vivo or live animal platforms to deliver training in both general and therapeutic endoscopy. Simulators have demonstrated their greatest utility in training novice endoscopists. Intermediate and expert endoscopists may additionally benefit from simulator exposure when learning advanced therapeutic techniques including large tissue resection or natural orifice transluminal endoscopic surgery.

Summary: Simulator-based learning offers promise to complement conventional endoscopic training modalities for novice trainees. Nevertheless, additional evidence demonstrating a clear benefit is required for simulators to become an integral part of gastroenterology training. As novel advanced endoscopic therapies are developed, endoscopic simulators may assume a larger role in training prior to clinical practice.