Box-trainers are excellent for the mastery of basic skills such as suturing, which a recent US national survey confirmed to be the skill in most need of improvement, as well as the most important one to master before graduating out of fellowship training.
Fact: 56% of entering fellows were found to be unable to demonstrate proficiency in the skill of laparoscopic suturing.
Statistics like these suggest that while there are indeed many simulation technologies on the market with features and feedback systems of varying complexity, there is a vital need to get back to basics and master the foundational skills of practicing safe laparoscopic surgery before considering the additional features and expenses of more advanced training simulators.
Introducing: The Aspire Box Trainer by Laparo Medical Simulators.
Box-trainers are generally simply built and lightweight. The Aspire box-trainer was designed with durability and portability in mind and is easily adapted to home or workplace settings as needed.
It features 8 trocar positions with LED’s and an adjustable camera inside. One simply has to download the software and plug it into their computer of choice to begin the training experience.
As previously discussed, simulation training is most beneficial when integrated with a competence-based, validated laparoscopic skills curriculum. On this condition, multiple studies have demonstrated that the humble box-trainer is easily sufficient in lieu of the higher-end, and significantly higher-cost virtual reality trainers.
There are several training modules that included developing the necessary skills in-depth perception, counter-intuitive fulcrum use, ambidexterity, hand-eye coordination, and bimanual manipulation. An additional cuvette module is available where learners may place an object of their choosing inside for training purposes.
Box-trainers are arguably the most effective investments to begin laparoscopic surgical training and should be considered an integral part of mandatory and proficiency-based training curricula, despite their relative simplicity.