Objective: Establish the feasibility of a predictive validity study in sinus surgery simulation training and demonstrate the effectiveness of the Endoscopic Sinus Surgery Simulator (ES3) as a training device. Study Design: Prospective, multi-institutional controlled trial. Setting: Four tertiary academic centers with accredited otolaryngology-head and neck surgery residency programs. Subjects: Twelve ES3-trained novice residents were compared with 13 control novice residents. Methods: Subjects were assessed on the performance of basic sinus surgery tasks. Their first in vivo procedure was video recorded and submitted to a blinded panel of independent experts after the panel established a minimum inter-rater reliability of 80 percent. The recordings were reviewed by using a standardized computer-assisted method and customized metrics. Results were analyzed with the Mann-Whitney U test. Internal rater consistency was verified with Pearson moment correlation. Results: Completion time was significantly shorter in the experimental group (injection P = 0.003, dissection P < 0.001), which, according to the rater panel, also demonstrated higher confidence (P = 0.009), demonstrated skill during instrument manipulation (P = 0.011), and made fewer technical mistakes during the injection task (P = 0.048) compared with the control group. The raters' post hoc internal consistency was deemed adequate (r > 0.5 between serial measurements). Conclusion: The validity of the ES3 as an effective surgical trainer was verified in multiple instances, including those not depending on subjective rater evaluations. The ES3 is one of the few virtual reality simulators with a comprehensive validation record. Advanced simulation technologies need more rapid implementation in otolaryngology training, as they present noteworthy potential for high-quality surgical education while meeting the necessity of patient safety.
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