Grimes JA, Wallace ML, Schmiedt CW, Parks AH. Evaluation of surgical models for training veterinary students to perform enterotomies. Vet Surg. 2019 Aug;48(6):985-996. doi: 10.1111/vsu.13228. Epub 2019 May 17

PMID: 31099106.


Objective: To compare surgical models for teaching enterotomies to students.

Study design: Prospective, randomized study.

Sample population: Second-year veterinary students (n = 59) and faculty surgeons/surgery residents (n = 19).

Methods: Participants performed an enterotomy on each of 3 models (equine cadaver intestine, SurgiReal small intestine simulator, and SynDaver canine bowel) and completed a survey comparing them to either an enterotomy on an anesthetized pig (students) or intestinal surgery experience (faculty/residents). Surveys results were compiled and analyzed.

Results: Both student and faculty/resident groups rated cadaver intestine as more similar to live intestine compared with the synthetic models for incision, tissue handling, mucosal eversion, needle passage, knot tying, and best preparing for live intestine. Students rated SynDaver as more similar to live intestine than SurgiReal for incision and ranked SurgiReal as more similar to live intestine than SynDaver for mucosal eversion. There was no difference between the ranks assigned to SurgiReal and SynDaver for faculty/residents. Faculty/residents responded most often that cadaver intestine would be the model they recommend for training students.

Conclusion: Cadaver intestine was the model most similar to live intestine for all variables tested. SurgiReal and SynDaver models were comparable to each other but did not simulate live intestine as well as cadaver intestine.

Clinical significance: Cadaver intestine more closely approximated live intestine compared with either synthetic model. SurgiReal and SynDaver may be adequate alternatives if cadaver intestine is unavailable.