Feasibility of a Novel Fluoroscopic Trainer for the Orthopaedic Trainee

Matthew Freeman, Monty Khela, Samuel Mormino, Ashley Creager, Elizabeth Lyden, Justin Siebler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: We sought to create a novel method of teaching orthopedic trainees to efficiently obtain intraoperative radiographs using nonfluoroscopic digital cameras. Specifically, teaching them to make minor, uniplanar, adjustments while limiting the number of fluoroscopy images obtained during placement of a guidewire “start-point,” for intramedullary nailing. Design: Prospective cohort study including medical students from 2 academic centers. Two nonfluoroscopic digital cameras simulating orthogonal fluoroscopic images were utilized. A sponge was used to simulate soft tissue resistance while navigating a guidewire to the desired starting point. Three cannulated parallel cylinders in a triangular configuration are used to simulate our “start point.” Students completed 4 phases; trial and error, teaching, testing and retention. Setting: The protocol was completed at a single academic teaching hospital at the primary authors institution. Participants: We utilized medical students from 2 GME accredited medical schools to complete the protocol. Students were selected from orthopedic surgery interest groups at their respective institutions and participation was voluntary. Results: Twenty-one medical students completed the protocol. The number of seconds to achieve each target along with the number of pictures to achieve each target were recorded and averaged. The paired t-test was used to compare the difference between phases. There is a statistically significant difference in the mean number of seconds to achieve each target between phase 1 (baseline) and phase 3 (testing) (p < 0.0001). This statistically significant difference was retained in phase 4 (retention) (p < 0.0001). Conclusions: We were able to demonstrate a statistically significant decrease in the number of images and time to obtain the correct “start point.” This could theoretically decrease operative time and morbidity while teaching students in a low-stress training environment without exposure to radiation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)145-150
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Surgical Education
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2024


  • education
  • fluoroscopy
  • orthopedic surgery
  • radiation
  • training

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Education


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