BACKGROUND - With the institution of the work-hour restrictions in 2003, less time may be available for surgical residents to learn operative technique and judgment. While numerous studies have evaluated the use of surgical simulation training to enhance operative skills, little is known about the quality of teaching that takes place in the operating room (OR). The purpose of this study was to assess residents' perception of faculty teaching in the OR in order to target ways to improve operative education.
METHODS - A request for resident participation in an online survey was sent to the Program Coordinator at all 255 ACGME-accredited general surgery residency programs.
RESULTS - A total of 148 programs (59%) participated in the survey, and anonymous responses were submitted by 998 of 4926 residents (20%). Most residents reported that attending surgeons verbalize their operative approach (55%), include residents in intraoperative decisions (61%), and offer technical advice (84%). However, few residents reported that faculty help to identify the resident's personal educational operative goals preoperatively (18%) or discuss areas of improvement with residents (37%). Of all cases scrubbed in the past year, most residents feel as though they only actually performed the procedure between 26% and 50% (29%) or between 51% and 75% (32%) of the time. However, more than half of all residents (51%) log these procedures for ACGME as primary surgeon 76%-100% of the time.
CONCLUSIONS - This study demonstrates that from the residents' perspective, a number of opportunities exist to improve teaching in the OR, such as guiding residents with preoperative preparation and providing them with constructive feedback. These findings also suggest that residents may be logging cases without feeling as though they actually perform the operations.
Copyright © 2012 Association of Program Directors in Surgery. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.