Current status of simulation-based training in pediatric surgery: a systematic review

Ebrahim Adnan Patel, Abdullatif Aydın*, Ashish Desai, Prokar Dasgupta, Kamran Ahmed

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

38 Citations (Scopus)


BACKGROUND: Simulation based training enables pediatric surgical trainees to attain proficiency in surgical skills. This study aims to identify the currently available simulators for pediatric surgery, assess their validation and strength of evidence supporting each model.

METHODS: Both Medline and EMBASE were searched for English language articles either describing or validating simulation models for pediatric surgery. A level of evidence (LoE) followed by a level of recommendation (LoR) was assigned to each validation study and simulator, based on a modified Oxford Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine classification for educational studies.

RESULTS: Forty-nine articles were identified describing 44 training models and courses. Of these articles, 44 were validation studies. Face validity was evaluated by 20 studies, 28 for content, 24 demonstrated construct validity and 1 showed predictive validity. Of the validated models, 3 were given an LoR of 2, 21 an LoR of 3 and 12 an LoR of 4. None reached the highest LoR.

CONCLUSIONS: There are a growing number of simulators specific to pediatric surgery. However, these simulators have limited LoE and LoR in current studies. The lack of NoTSS training is also apparent. We advocate more randomized trials to validate these models, and attempts to determine predictive validity.

TYPE OF STUDY: Original / systematic review.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1884-1893
JournalJournal of Pediatric Surgery
Issue number9
Early online date8 Dec 2018
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2019


  • Education
  • Paediatric surgery
  • Pediatric surgery
  • Simulation
  • Training


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