alexa A computer-based radiology simulator as a learning tool to help prepare first-year residents for being on call.


Journal of Pulmonary & Respiratory Medicine

Author(s): Towbin AJ, Paterson B, Chang PJ

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Abstract RATIONALE AND OBJECTIVES: The start of call is a stressful time for radiology residents. Traditional teaching methods are not ideal for call preparation because they are radically different than the task performed on call. The purpose of this study is to determine if a computer-based radiology simulator would have an effect on resident confidence level or diagnostic abilities. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A simulator was created to mimic the picture archive and communication system (PACS) at our hospital. Typical call-level cases were selected, anonymized, and entered into the database. The first-year residents were randomly split into a control group and a study group that used the simulator. Each resident took a survey 1 month before and after beginning call to measure his or her subjective feeling of preparedness and nervousness. Objective measures were also obtained through the use of discordance levels from on-call cases. RESULTS: Seventy-one cases were entered into the simulator. Of the 12 residents in the first-year class, 7 were placed in the study group and 5 in the control group. The residents in both groups claimed they felt more prepared and less nervous 1 month after starting call. The differences at survey were not significant, but the residents in the study group trended toward feeling more prepared and less nervous. There was no statistical difference in the discordance rates for on-call cases between the two groups. CONCLUSIONS: Although statistical significance was not reached between the users of the radiology simulator and the control group, there was a subjective feeling that the simulator was useful for call preparation and as an interactive learning tool. A larger sample study group size may show statistical significance. This article was published in Acad Radiol and referenced in Journal of Pulmonary & Respiratory Medicine

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