The endoscopic procedures became more and more complex over the past years. These procedures require a special training which can be effectively and safely performed outside the operating theatre. Several training programs have been developed for teaching basic surgical skills to young residents but very few methods are available for advanced endoscopy and surgery. The Thiel method has several advantages over other training systems. Training on cadavers, compared to animal models offers an anatomy identical to that found in patients without needing anesthesia. Moreover, a same cadaver can be used for several different procedures belongings to surgery and pneumology.
The conservation of human cadavers is realized by the Thiel method (Ann Anat 1992, 174: 185-195). The technique allows a floppy preservation of human tissue similar to that found in living counterparts. Our center organizes courses for endoscopy, thoracic surgery, bariatric, antireflux, abdominal wall, colon and rectum surgery. Five video monitors with camera system are available with the possibility of computerized image recording.
Different courses were performed and evaluated by the participants (6 was the best and one the lowest voting). Course evaluation was performed on an anonymous questionnaire for the course organisation, theoretical and practical aspects and the tutors. The results were for thoracic surgery 5.73 ± 0.05, endoscopy 5.82 ±0.07.
Training on cadaver specimens gives the opportunity to perform major operations in endoscopy and thoracic surgery respecting the human ethics. Difficult endoscopical and surgical procedures can be teached step by step under real anatomic situations in small groups. Therefore, it is probably the best method for advanced surgeons to improve their performance. A good preservation of the tissue depends on a special know-how necessitating a tight collaboration with an anatomical department. From this point of view this method is reserved to a small quantity of recognized national or international centers.
Reduced learning curve of complex surgical procedures and higher quality control.
Philippe Morand, None.