OBJECTIVES: The purpose of our study is to identify the potential roles of a virtual reality (VR) temporal bone simulator in the Otolaryngology residency program. Study Design: Cross-sectional educational design Methods: Five residents ranging from PGY-1 to PGY-4 were evaluated at three settings: 1) Virtual reality temporal bone simulator, 2) Temporal bone laboratory 3) Operating room. Using a previously validated checklist for mastoidectomy, faculty evaluated the residents for the following tasks: 1) Identification and definition of tegmen 2) Definition of sigmoid sinus and sino-dural angle. 3) Use of drill and 4) Overall surgical performance. The evaluations on virtual reality temporal bone simulator were then compared with the evaluations conducted in the operating room and the temporal bone laboratory. Results: The mean total score obtained for residents on VR temporal bone simulator was 2.54±0.75, 3.13±0.55 for OR, and 2.18±0.29 for temporal bone laboratory. The mean total score obtained for all settings among Otology 1 was 2.27±0.72, and for Otology 2 was 2.70±0.68. Conclusion: The surgical performance on the VR temporal bone simulator is concordant with the temporal bone laboratory performance, which provides an indirect evidence of transferability of surgical skills to the OR. VR simulator can assist in learning technical skills for mastoidectomy procedure and attain surgical competency at a faster rate.
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