Intraoperative Imaging Curriculum update

Next-generation course conducted in Basel in April 2019

25 April 2019

Intraoperative Imaging Curriculum update
Rodrigo Pesantez and participants at the Basel course

Building on a series of 11 half-day, case-based seminars that showed excellent evaluation ratings in all regions, the imaging curriculum planning committee designed a new hands-on course to address participants’ skills more than knowledge and attitudes.

Over two days, 35 residents, qualified trauma surgeons, and one radiologist from Switzerland, Germany, Portugal, Estonia, Slovenia, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Ghana gathered in Basel, Switzerland, and completed a full day of hands-on exercises in both 2-D and 3-D intraoperative imaging.

Jochen Franke, chairperson and curriculum taskforce international program editor (IPE), explained the concept of this first-ever AOTrauma intraoperative imaging course during the introduction.

The day is a series of scenario-based activities built around the four fractures that are most commonly treated in most parts of the world. One participant leads the challenge in each exercise (eg, obtain standard projections in the proximal humerus, detect a misplaced screw in the distal radioulnar joint, analyze the planes in a 3-D dataset of the ankle). The other participants in the group support and learn together with the guidance of one faculty member at each station and additional rotating faculty.

“We are really pleased that the concept worked. Now we will see if the course can be run in other locations and regions”

Jochen Franke, chairperson and curriculum taskforce international program editor (IPE)

During the day, participants spent 90 minutes on each station, where they completed five tasks and then reviewed the take-home messages. Each station had a human anatomical specimen that was prepared in advance by the faculty, with implants positioned in both good and suboptimal positions. (We cannot share the details because you must attend the course to detect the correct and problematic ones.) Radiation protection education was also a focus, as the participants used the c-arms all day.

What did the participants say?

In the immediate evaluation, participants commented on the most valuable aspects of the content, including "Learning the standard views for these four anatomical regions," "Hands-on training including very useful tips," and the "entire structure of the day" and "great organization and teaching." 

What did the faculty say?

During the faculty debriefing, faculty agreed that the content, participants, faculty, and equipment were of the highest quality. Some specific aspects highlighted were the high level of engagement of the participants, the excellent lab, the specimens, C-arms, operating room (OR) tables, and support, the rotation plan and timing, and the way the faculty gave feedback and interacted. Handouts for each station and step-by-step posters could be developed for future events.

“The format is great and could offer an opportunity to expand to team training (preparing and setting up the OR together) and to integrate other clinical areas in hospital events (spine, etc)”

Amir Matityahu, Computer-Assisted Surgery Expert Group

"We are really pleased that the concept worked. Now we will see if the course can be run in other locations and regions,” Jochen Franke reported. “We will also explore how modules could be integrated in other courses."

Rodrigo Pesantez from Colombia said the course offered much-needed content.

"This was a great course and the subject is really needed, the addition of anatomical specimens added value: the integration of imaging in 2D and 3D is amazing,” he said. “It also shows our great collaboration with Siemens Healthineers and we should try to take it around the world."

Amir Matityahu from the Computer-Assisted Surgery Expert Group was impressed by the format.

"The format is great and could offer an opportunity to expand to team training (preparing and setting up the OR together) and to integrate other clinical areas in hospital events (spine, etc),” he added.

Andreas Fischer, Siemens Healthineers Vice President Global Marketing Surgery commented: “This AOTrauma imaging course is to my knowledge worldwide the first course of its kind. My impression is that the participants really learn a lot about intraoperative imaging. Especially the interactive and hands-on approach was very well received. The AO Foundation-Siemens Healthineers educational grant partnership was initiated in 2007 and this course is the absolute highlight of this collaboration. Thanks to the dedicated faculty and the great work of the AO Education Institute.”

This stand-alone course is an expensive event and requires the support of the educational grant and excellent collaboration between AO and Siemens Healthineers, which is now in its 14th year.

Event organizers are grateful for support from:

  • Jochen Franke, Daniel Rikli, Michael Kraus, Sven Vetter, Benedict Swartman, and Holger Keil (chairpersons and faculty)
  • Nils Beisemann and Maxim Privalov (faculty, and for advance preparation of the course)
  • Siemens Healthineers (for C-arms, support, and radiation protection materials)
  • Trumpf Medical (for the four OR tables and support)
  • Raditec Medical AG, Switzerland (for the RaySafe radiation monitoring system)
  • DePuy Synthes (for instruments, and radiation protection materials)
  • AOTrauma, especially Bettina Bolliger, for the organization
  • University of Basel (Niklaus Friederich and Simone Hottinger) and AO faculty for recommending the course to residents and colleagues
  • The Anatomical Institute, Basel, and its donor program (for the excellent facilities and support)
  • AO Education Institute, especially Mike Cunningham and colleagues (for curriculum design and event evaluation)

What next? 

If your hospital or region is interested in running a course, please make your education committees aware. Applications for both courses and half-day, case-based seminars may be made online at the following link:

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