Economically affordable anatomical kidney phantom with calyxes for puncture and drainage training in interventional urology and radiology

Acta Radiol Short Rep. 2014 Jun 13;3(5):2047981614534231. doi: 10.1177/2047981614534231. eCollection 2014 Jun.


Background: Trends in interventional radiology and urology training are orientated towards reducing costs and increasing efficiency. In order to comply with the trends, we propose training on inexpensive patient-specific kidney phantoms.

Purpose: To develop a new kidney phantom for puncture and drainage training in interventional urology and radiology, and to evaluate their anatomical correctness and suitability for training compared to the traditional way of training on home-made phantoms.

Material and methods: A CASE STUDY FOR VALIDATION OF KIDNEY PHANTOMS WAS CONDUCTED WITH NINE RADIOLOGY STUDENTS DIVIDED INTO TWO GROUPS: one trained on standard home-made training phantom (n = 4) and the other on our kidney phantoms (n = 5). Another test phantom was used to evaluate the effectiveness of the training of the two groups. The tests were video recorded and analyzed. Duration of the procedure was used as the primary indicator of procedure's quality. Comparison tests were also conducted with professional radiologists. Anatomical correctness of the kidney phantom was evaluated by comparing the post mortem kidney scans with reconstructed models from CT scans. Subjective feedback was also collected from the participants. Wider use of kidney phantoms was analyzed.

Results: The average volumetric difference between post mortem kidney scans and reconstructed CT kidney models was 4.70 ± 3.25%. All five students practicing on the kidney phantom improved their performance and the results were almost equal to the results of the professional radiologist while in the other group two students out of four trained on standard home-made training phantoms failed to improve their performance. However, the small number of test subjects prevents us from drawing general conclusions about the efficiency of the new practice. The kidney phantoms were found usable also for nephrostomy catheter placement training under fluoroscopy.

Conclusion: The feedback from radiologists showed that the anatomically correct features of the phantom is an added value for the training and has a potential to increase the quality of minimally invasive procedures in general.

Keywords: Phantom; nephrostomy; patient-specific anatomy; training; ultrasound.