Cardio Fellows Benefit From Simulation-Based Training on Transesophageal Echocardiography

Simulated-based training on transesophageal echocardiography (TEE) notably improves the knowledge and skills of cardiology fellows, according to a new study published in JAMA Cardiology.

In this multicenter study, researchers randomized 1:1 324 cardiology fellows from 42 university centers to two groups, either with or without simulation support. The co-primary end points were defined as the scores in the final theoretical and practical tests 3 months subsequent to training.

The results showed that while the theoretical and practical test scores were similar between the simulation and control groups groups, cardiology fellows in the simulation group exhibited higher theoretical test and practical test scores following the training than those in the traditional group. The researchers also observed that the effectiveness of the simulation training was even greater when performed early on in fellowship (2 or years or less of training).

Moroever, the study showed that participants in the simulation group completed TEE notably sooner than the traditional group ( 8.3 [SD, 1.4] minutes vs 9.4 [SD, 1.2] minutes; P < .001, respectively). Furthermore, the researchers noted, fellows in the simulation group felt more ready and more confident about performing a TEE alone after the training.

“Simulation-based teaching of TEE showed a significant improvement in the knowledge, skills, and self-assessment of proficiency of cardiology fellows, as well as a reduction in the amount of time needed to complete the examination. These results should encourage further investigation of clinical performance and patient benefits of TEE simulation training,” the researchers concluded.