Low-hanging fruit: A clementine as a simulation model for advanced laparoscopy

Pamela Andreatta*, David A. Marzano, Diana S. Curran, Jessica J. Klotz, Charlotte R. Gamble, R. Kevin Reynolds

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


INTRODUCTION: Low-cost, high-fidelity models for training in advanced laparoscopic surgery techniques are not currently available. The objective of this study was to evaluate a model and assessment protocol for developing associated fine, precise laparoscopic dissection skills with accompanying surgical decision making. METHODS: Novice to expert laparoscopists (n = 41) were asked to remove the peel of a clementine in as few pieces as possible, separate and remove all albedo from and between all fruit segments, and return the clementine to as close to its natural state as possible with completely closed skin (sutured). Clinical decision making included deciding when unacceptable segment damage would result by removing difficult-to-extract albedo, analogous to treating lesions or metastases through other methods, rather than risking damage to vital anatomic structures. Faculty assessed deidentified video-recorded performances. Data analyses included analysis of variance with Bonferroni post hoc. RESULTS: A single-performance construct (operative ability) with 2 scoring dimensions (surgical skills and clinical judgment) was confirmed through factor analysis. There were significant performance differences between all experience levels (F2,41 = 59.175, P < 0.000). There were no statistical time differences between the groups. CONCLUSIONS: Validation of this low-cost, easily facilitated model for developing advanced laparoscopic surgical skills may support the preparation of residents and fellows and provide a platform for skill acquisition, assessment, and basic critical thinking for performing laparoscopic tasks.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)234-240
Number of pages7
JournalSimulation in Healthcare
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Laparoscopic training
  • Low-cost training
  • Minimally invasive surgery
  • Simulationbased training


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