The effect of magnification loupes on the performance of preclinical dental students

Quintessence Int. 2011 Jan;42(1):45-55.

Abstract

Objective: optical magnifying devices such as magnification loupes are increasingly used in clinical practice and educational settings. However, scientific evidence to validate their benefits is limited. This study assessed the effect of dental magnification loupes on psychomotor skill acquisition during a preclinical operative dentistry course.

Method and materials: the performance of first-year dental students was assessed during an Advanced Simulation Course (AS) using virtual reality-based technology (VRBT) training. The test group consisted of 116 dental students using magnification loupes (+MAG), while students not using them (-MAG, n = 116) served as the control. The following parameters were evaluated: number of successfully passing preparation procedures per course rotation, amount of time per tooth preparation, number of times students needed computer assistance and evaluation, and amount of time spent in the computer assistance and evaluation mode per procedure. Data were collected on each student through VRBT during the preparation procedure and stored on a closed network server computer. Unpaired t tests were used to analyze mean differences between the groups. In addition, student acceptance of magnification loupes was measured and evaluated through survey interpretation.

Results: +MAG students completed more preparations, worked faster per procedure, and used the computer-assisted evaluation less frequently and for shorter periods, therefore displaying greater overall performance. The survey revealed a high degree of student acceptance of using magnification.

Conclusion: dental magnification loupes significantly enhanced student performance during preclinical dental education and were considered an effective adjunct by the students who used them.

Publication types

  • Controlled Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Dentistry, Operative / education*
  • Dentistry, Operative / instrumentation*
  • Educational Measurement
  • Efficiency
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lenses*
  • Male
  • Psychomotor Performance*
  • Self-Assessment
  • Students, Dental*
  • Task Performance and Analysis
  • Tooth Preparation / instrumentation