Success Stories

Mimic products in action

Mimic customers are utilizing the dV-Trainer® in a variety of ways. Visit this page regularly to hear how Mimic’s simulator is being used in training and research.

University Hospital of Nancy

Led by Dr. Jacques Hubert, the University Hospital of Nancy, France, is conducting regular training courses to teach surgeons from all over Europe to use the da Vinci® Surgical System. The hospital purchased its first dV-Trainer in 2008 and two more in 2009. With the addition of another two units in 2011, the University Hospital of Nancy now represents the largest concentration of robotic surgery simulators in the world, with five total units.

Dr. Hubert and associates offer a two part course that includes lectures, videos, simulation and da Vinci training. In the first phase of the course, surgeons spend three days alternating between lectures and simulation training. On the fourth day, surgeons get their first chance to practice with a da Vinci system. The trainees then return two months later for additional training on the dV-Trainer and the da Vinci. Trainees have given the course glowing reviews, with many requesting to visit again and pay for additional time on the Mimic simulators.

Dr. Hubert’s group is also very active in research and validation. Dr. Cyril Perrenot and others recently published one of the largest validation studies to date on the dV-Trainer, involving 75 subjects. This study, the first to look at reliability in addition to validity, concluded that the dV-Trainer is a valid tool to assess robotic surgery skills. The results further proved the face, content, construct, and concurrent validity of the dV-Trainer.

MultiCare Health Systems, Tacoma, WA

MultiCare Health Systems is a pioneer in Western Washington when it comes to robotic surgery. Led by Dr. John Lenihan, they introduced robotics in 2005, have performed over 2,500 robotic procedures, and are designated as a gynecological Epicenter by Intuitive Surgical. MultiCare installed the dV-Trainer in 2009, and simulation now plays an integral part in credentialing, privileging, and skills maintenance. In 2011, the institution was certified by the AAGL as a Center of Excellence in Minimally invasive GYN Surgery.

In order to meet basic credentialing requirements, a surgeon must complete training including live case observation, bedside training, dry-labs, pig lab, and score at least 90% on designated “basic” (level 1) Mimic simulation exercises. A minimum of two proctored cases is required, and the next seven cases must be successfully reviewed by a multidisciplinary robotics committee. “It’s great to have both the dV-Trainer and the Si Skills simulator available for simulation training. The main advantage of the dV-Trainer is that as a “stand-alone” unit it is always accessible for training”, says Dr. Lenihan, Medical Director of Robotics and Minimally Invasive Surgery.  “The Skills Simulator is attached to a surgeons console located in the OR, and may be used for training only after hours”.

MultiCare now has 24 active robotic surgeons in OB-GYN, cardiovascular, urology, and general surgery who have all gone through this rigorous credentialing program. Simulation training is also required to establish advanced robotic privileges. In addition to completing 15 successful “basic” cases and attending formal advanced observation or hands-on training, the surgeons must also complete designated “advanced” (level 2) Mimic simulation exercises on the dV-Trainer or Si Skills Simulator with a 90% composite score.

Dr. Lenihan and MultiCare are also using simulation to combat the real threat of skills degradation. Studies have shown that surgical performance suffers dramatically after only a few weeks of inactivity. At MultiCare, a surgeon must perform a minimum of 20 robotic cases per year in order to maintain privileges. The surgeon must also demonstrate proficiency annually on the simulator by completing select level 2 exercises with a score of at least 85%. In addition, if a surgeon goes for more than 3 months without a case, the surgeon will be required to complete a training curriculum on the simulator before scheduling a new case.