Topics in Training   |    
Do the Skills Acquired by Novice Surgeons Using Anatomic Dry Models Transfer Effectively to the Task of Diagnostic Knee Arthroscopy Performed on Cadaveric Specimens?
Aaron Butler, BS1; Tyson Olson, BS1; Ryan Koehler, BS1; Gregg Nicandri, MD1
1 Department of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation, University of Rochester Medical Center, 601 Elmwood Avenue, Rochester, NY 14642. E-mail address for G. Nicandri: Gregg_Nicandri@urmc.rochester.edu
View Disclosures and Other Information
  • Disclosure statement for author(s): PDF

Investigation performed at the University of Rochester Medical Center, Rochester, New York

Disclosure: None of the authors received payments or services, either directly or indirectly (i.e., via his or her institution), from a third party in support of any aspect of this work. One or more of the authors, or his or her institution, has had a financial relationship, in the thirty-six months prior to submission of this work, with an entity in the biomedical arena that could be perceived to influence or have the potential to influence what is written in this work. No author has had any other relationships, or has engaged in any other activities, that could be perceived to influence or have the potential to influence what is written in this work. The complete Disclosures of Potential Conflicts of Interest submitted by authors are always provided with the online version of the article.

Copyright © 2013 by The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, Inc.
J Bone Joint Surg Am, 2013 Feb 06;95(3):e15 1-8. doi: 10.2106/JBJS.L.00491
5 Recommendations (Recommend) | 3 Comments | Saved by 3 Users Save Case



The use of surgical simulation in orthopaedic education is increasing; however, its ideal place within the training curriculum remains unknown. The purpose of this study was to determine the effectiveness of training novice surgeons on an anatomic dry model of the knee prior to training them to perform diagnostic arthroscopy on cadaveric specimens.


Fourteen medical students were randomly assigned to two groups. The experimental group was trained to perform diagnostic arthroscopy of the knee on anatomic dry models prior to training on cadaveric specimens. The control group was trained only on cadaveric specimens. Proficiency was assessed with use of a modified version of a previously validated objective assessment of arthroscopic skill, the Basic Arthroscopic Knee Skill Scoring System (BAKSSS). The mean number of trials required to attain minimal proficiency when performing diagnostic knee arthroscopy was compared between the groups. The cumulative transfer effectiveness ratio (CTER) was calculated to measure the transfer of skills acquired by the experimental group.


The mean number of trials to demonstrate minimum proficiency was significantly lower in the experimental group (2.57) than in the control group (4.57) (p < 0.01). The mean time to demonstrate proficiency was also significantly less in the experimental group (37.51 minutes) than in the control group (60.48 minutes) (p < 0.01). The CTER of dry-model training for the task of performing diagnostic knee arthroscopy on cadaveric specimens was 0.2.


Previous training utilizing an anatomic dry knee model resulted in improved proficiency for novice surgeons learning to perform diagnostic knee arthroscopy on cadaveric specimens. A CTER of 0.2 suggests that dry models can serve as a useful adjunct to cadaveric training for diagnostic knee arthroscopy but cannot entirely replace it within the orthopaedic curriculum. Further work is necessary to determine the optimal amount of training on anatomic dry models that will maximize transfer effectiveness and to determine how well skills obtained in the simulated environment transfer to the operating room.

Figures in this Article
    Sign In to Your Personal ProfileSign In To Access Full Content
    Not a Subscriber?
    Get online access for 30 days for $35
    New to JBJS?
    Sign up for a full subscription to both the print and online editions
    Register for a FREE limited account to get full access to all CME activities, to comment on public articles, or to sign up for alerts.
    Register for a FREE limited account to get full access to all CME activities
    Have a subscription to the print edition?
    Current subscribers to The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery in either the print or quarterly DVD formats receive free online access to JBJS.org.
    Forgot your password?
    Enter your username and email address. We'll send you a reminder to the email address on record.

    Forgot your username or need assistance? Please contact customer service at subs@jbjs.org. If your access is provided
    by your institution, please contact you librarian or administrator for username and password information. Institutional
    administrators, to reset your institution's master username or password, please contact subs@jbjs.org


    Accreditation Statement
    These activities have been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint sponsorship of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, Inc. The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.
    CME Activities Associated with This Article
    Submit a Comment
    Please read the other comments before you post yours. Contributors must reveal any conflict of interest.
    Comments are moderated and will appear on the site at the discretion of JBJS editorial staff.

    * = Required Field
    (if multiple authors, separate names by comma)
    Example: John Doe

    Related Content
    The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery
    JBJS Case Connector
    Topic Collections
    Related Audio and Videos
    PubMed Articles
    Clinical Trials
    Readers of This Also Read...
    JBJS Jobs
    Oregon - The Center - Orthopedic and Neurosurgical Care and Research
    Pennsylvania - Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center