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In the Department of Neuroradiology at the Technical University of Munich in Germany, we have decided to use Mentice’s simulators for training on endovascular procedures. We have implemented simulators into the interventional radiology residents’ daily practice for diagnosis of cerebral angiograms. In this blog post, I will share our experience of simulation training and top three reasons why we use Mentice’s simulator.

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1. Our residents are required to train on simulators before treating real patients

Simulation training is the precondition for our residents to start their residency in interventional neuroradiology. They have to perform a defined number of simulated scenarios - partly supervised, partly on their own - before they are allowed to treat real patients. In addition, they have to practice special maneuvers such as manipulation of  a Simmons-catheter.

Our residents are required to train on simulators due to the fact that most of them have never performed any angiography of any part of the body. They become easily overcharged by all the different requirements of the angio-suite. It includes everything from handling the imaging equipment and injecting the contrast agent to reacting to the patients’ behaviours and coping with human factors. To practice the technical part helps the residents enhance their interpersonal skills and understand and act upon the pathologies.

2. Endovascular simulation training is part of the University’s educational courses

Simulation training is part of Technical University of Munich’s educational courses. Third year to fifth year students may choose an optional two-day course in interventional neuroradiology, in which they learn to perform an angiography, or try to do an aneurysm coiling or a stenting of a stenosis. It is not a mandatory part of the students’ curricula to be able to coil an aneurysm. But it is a way of increasing their skills and interest in the field of interventional neuroradiology. It may act as a recruitment for students to become neuroradiologists.

3. The effects of endovascular simulation training are used for research work

The effect of using a simulator for training angiography procedures for the residents, and the influence on patients’ safety, is a matter of our research work. Our research work is constantly in progress and right now we are looking into who benefits the most from endovascular simulation training (and why). We focus on which patients are useful (the research) by acquiring and segmenting the patients’ specific computed tomography (CT), or magnetic resonance (MR) data. Upon this successful process, we perform a number of simulated cases in advance of the real angiography procedure.

 

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Mentice’s simulator provides risk-free, hands-on training of endovascular procedures

The realistic training of Mentice’s simulator permits transfer of skills and knowledge in a reproducible, safe and measurable way, benefiting residents but also clinical teams as well as patients.

What are your thoughts on endovascular simulation training? Does your hospital use simulation as part of your educational courses? Please, share your thoughts with me in the comment field below! For more information about VIST® Case-It, visit Mentice’s website or download the product sheet.

Cerebral angiography is a minimally invasive procedure to provide images of cerebral vessels. It is used to diagnose pathologies of the arteries, which can lead to a stroke or an aneurysm. A guiding wire and catheter combination are inserted into a large artery in the leg and guided through to the area being examined. A contrast agent is injected to visualise the pathology and fluoroscopic images are taken.

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Dr. Kornelia Kreiser

Written by Dr. Kornelia Kreiser

Interventional Neuroradiologist at the Technical University of Munich in Germany.