Simulation-based flexible ureteroscopy training using a novel ureteroscopy part-task trainer


  • Udi Blankstein University of Toronto
  • Andrea G. Lantz Dalhousie University
  • R John D’A Honey University of Toronto
  • Kenneth T. Pace University of Toronto
  • Michael Ordon
  • Jason Young Lee St Michael's Hospital University of Toronto



simulation, education, ureteroscopy


Introduction: Simulation-based training (SBT) is being increasingly used for novice trainees as a means of overcoming the early learning curve associated with new surgical skills. We designed a SBT flexible ureteroscopy (fURS) course using a novel inanimate training model (Cook Medical, Bloomington, IN; URS model). We evaluated the course and validated this Cook URS model.

Methods: A 2-week SBT fURS course was designed for junior level urology trainees at 2 Canadian universities. The curriculum included didactic lectures, hands-on training, independent training sessions with expert feedback, and use of the Cook URS parttask model. Baseline and post-course assessments of trainee fURS skills were conducted using a standardized test task (fURS with basket manipulation of a calyceal stone). Performances were videorecorded and reviewed by 2 blinded experts using a validated assessment device.

Results: Fifteen residents (postgraduate years [PGY] 0–3) participated in the course. Of the participants, 80% rated the Cook URS model as realistic (mean = 4.2/5) and 5 endourology experts rated it as useful as a training device (mean = 4.9/5), providing both face and content validity. The mean overall performance scores, task completion times, and passing ratings correlated with trainee clinical fURS experience – demonstrating construct validity for the Cook URS model. The mean post-course task completion times (15.76 vs. 9.37 minutes, p = 0.001) and overall performance scores (19.20 vs. 25.25, p = 0.007) were significantly better than at baseline. Post-course performance was better in all domains assessed by the validated assessment device.

Conclusions: This study demonstrates that a SBT curriculum for fURS can lead to improved short-term technical skills among junior level urology residents. The Cook URS model demonstrated good face, content and construct validity.


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Author Biography

Jason Young Lee, St Michael's Hospital University of Toronto

Assistant Professor

Division of Urology, Department of Surgery




How to Cite

Blankstein, U., Lantz, A. G., Honey, R. J. D., Pace, K. T., Ordon, M., & Lee, J. Y. (2015). Simulation-based flexible ureteroscopy training using a novel ureteroscopy part-task trainer. Canadian Urological Association Journal, 9(9-10), 331–5.



Original Research