Introduction: Simulators facilitate the acquisition of technical skills for endoscopy. Here, we describe the development, introduction, and first evaluation of a novel generation of mechanical endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) simulation models with simulated fluoroscopy, the X-Vision ERCP Training System.
Methods: A custom-made modular ERCP simulation system was built with the use of universally obtainable materials and tools. The trainee controls ERCP activities on two screens: the aspect of the papilla and duodenum is shown on the conventional endoscopy monitor, and the trainee's actions in the equivalents of the pancreaticobiliary ducts are shown on the viewing screen of the model. Thereby, the latter screen serves as a substitute for fluoroscopy. Currently, four different models are available, allowing simulation of selective cannulation of the pancreatic or bile duct, intubation of differently arranged papillae, stent placement, and sphincterotomy of a biopapilla. The X-Vision ERCP Training System was first used during an ERCP course attended by 26 endoscopists. Trainees were supervised by an ERCP expert and an experienced ERCP nurse at each training model. The training system was evaluated by the participants and experts using a specific questionnaire.
Results: During the course there were no technical problems related to the X-Vision ERCP Training System. After sphincterotomy the organic papillae could easily be exchanged within less than 15 seconds. Overall, the X-Vision ERCP Training System achieved favorable results in all categories assessed.
Conclusion: The new X-Vision ERCP Training System is simple and effective. A first evaluation in the context of an ERCP course showed impressive results.