Analysis of a practical surgical skills laboratory for nerve sparing radical prostatectomy Academic Article uri icon


  • PURPOSE:With the rapidly expanding anatomical and technical knowledge surrounding nervesparing radical prostatectomy (NSRP), anatomical and operative textbooks have failed to keep pace with the literature. A surgical skill laboratory (SSL) was designed to educate urology trainees on surgical anatomy and techniques for NSRP. The objective was to assess the validity of a SSL program. METHODS:A low-fidelity, anatomically accurate prostate model with its appropriate fascial coverings and location of the neurovascular bundle was created. Participants were surveyed prior to a SSL workshop for their knowledge of NSRP focusing on clinical and anatomical considerations. An interactive 2-h tutorial and workshop was then undertaken outlining the clinical and anatomical nuances for NSRP, with participants then practising an intra and inter-fascial NSRP on the model. Participants were resurveyed immediately after the workshop and at 6 months. RESULTS:Thirty participants completed the NSRP workshop. Significant differences (p < 0.0001) in anatomical and clinical knowledge were noted after the workshop with improvements for both junior and senior trainees. The knowledge was retained at 6 months following the workshop. CONCLUSIONS:A low-fidelity bench-top model is a feasible and reproducible technique for improving the understanding of periprostatic anatomy and the different surgical approaches for NSRP. The SSL is useful and knowledge gained appears to be retained by workshop participants. SSL workshops are a valid hands-on approach to teaching surgical skills and should remain an integral part of urology training.

publication date

  • 2018