Simulations and simulators in head and neck endocrine surgery

Ann Thyroid. 2020 Mar;5:3. doi: 10.21037/aot.2020.03.03. Epub 2020 Mar 31.


Simulations and simulators have become an increasingly important tool in trainee education across many surgical disciplines, particularly for robotic and minimally invasive procedures. Thyroidectomy and parathyroidectomy are common procedures performed across multiple surgical disciplines, however, there is limited literature regarding training models/simulators for these operations. This is despite the advent and growing popularity of remote-access thyroidectomy techniques, where simulators may provide significant value in trainee education and safe implementation. Here we review the literature regarding available simulations/simulators in head and neck endocrine surgery for both conventional transcervical approaches and newer remote-access thyroidectomy techniques.

Keywords: Surgical simulation; augmented reality; remote-access thyroidectomy; transoral endoscopic thyroidectomy; virtual reality.