Swiss-Based VirtaMed Continues to Provide Cutting Edge Surgical Simulators | IMSH 2017 Video Interview with Company Founder

virtamed simulator

At IMSH 2017 HealthySim was lucky to catch VirtaMed Founder and Co-CEO Stefan Tuchschmid, PhD to get a hands on demonstration of their hybrid surgical simulators and experimental VR technologies! I had a chance to try out their HTC Vive VR demonstration and found myself inside a knee to see the anatomy up close! We look forward to seeing what VirtaMed will continue to do with VR as a means to provide the most innovative simulation training possible. Certainly, their blended hybrid approach with haptics and on-screen displays certainly provides a unique training system in the market. The company will also work with you to create custom simulators for those programs looking for specific training requirements!



VirtaMed is a multinational Swiss-based company that develops & produces highly realistic surgical simulators for medical training by surgeons who use original instruments to train in a safe environment before performing on real patients. The origins of VirtaMed date back to 2001 when a hysteroscopy simulator project in the frame of the NCCR CO-ME of the Swiss National Science Foundation involving 16 PhD students was started. At the end of the project in 2007, one student, Stefan Tuchschmid, saw a business potential and decided to found VirtaMed with his colleagues Denis Steinemann and Daniel Bachofen.

10 Reasons Why Your Program Should Consider a VirtaMed Simulator:

  1. Only one platform for multiple simulators and surgical fields: On just one platform, multiple simulators, disciplines, and specializations can be trained. For example, arthroscopy training for knee and shoulder happens on the same simulator as urology or gynecology training. The simulation platform is also expandable for other procedures in the future, for example hip, ankle, elbow, or spine.
  2. Just like the real thing: Photorealistic high-fidelity simulation in HD: Highly realistic graphics, bleeding, and fluid behavior combine to create complete virtual patient cases. Anatomic models provide the best tactile feedback possible, since the models can be manipulated like in real-life, responding to every touch.
  3. Original instruments ease transfer of skills to the OR: Adapted original instruments provide a complete simulation experience and familiarization with real surgical tools. Resectoscopes, cameras, morcellators, shavers, graspers, or punches can be used for diagnostic and operative procedures. Using original instruments for training eases the transfer of skills to the operating room.
  4. Guided training saves instruction and OR time: A special feature of VirtaMed simulators is the SimProctor. Outside views, colored hints, and ghost tools show trainees how to perform various tasks, including how to hold instruments and how to complete individual procedure steps. The SimProctor integrates the best practices with clinical knowledge from key worldwide opinion leaders into the simulation, thereby reducing instruction time led by your key personnel as well as valuable OR time.
  5. Reduced costs for surgical training: Simulators reduce your costs for disposable material during physician training. It doesn’t matter whether a physician needs 2, 20, or 200 procedures to reach proficiency, there are no additional costs involved. Also, equipment breakage costs can be reduced significantly.
  6. Fast progress on the learning curve through an endless variety of pathologies: Virtual reality simulators offer an endless variety of pathologies and anatomies based on MRI/CT data of real patients. VirtaMed simulators have been designed to cover 95% of the variability of cases in real life, which would take years of practice without simulation. Individual training courses can also be created with specific training for beginners right up to experienced physicians.
  7. Complication training in a risk-free environment: The surgeon is confronted with the same complications as in the operating room and learns how to react to challenging pathologies or intense bleeding and bad viewing conditions. Complication training on the simulator prepares for challenges on the real patient without putting anyone at risk.
  8. Objective performance feedback with helpful metrics: Objective feedback is the basis for learning. After each completed procedure, the trainee receives a feedback report with target values, including time taken, movements with the instruments, landmarks visualized, pathologies resected, and much more. The trainee can also take screenshots at any time, and a movie of the procedure is saved together with the feedback report. This allows to track improvements and to debrief procedures later on.
  9. Better quality of care and patient safety: Using the best surgical education available enhances patient safety and quality of care in general. Surgeons are much better prepared for their first time in the operating room, and have already learned how to react to complications and have a realistic understanding of the procedure before they perform on a live patient for the first time. These first time cases go better, smoother, and quicker, which makes it a better patient and physician experience.
  10. A competitive edge – boost your reputation! Virtual reality simulators for surgical training give you a competitive advantage and boost your image. Residents love to be offered state-of-the-art technology for their best possible training. If you want to be at the forefront of innovative surgical training, VirtaMed simulators are a great choice – they are the best virtual reality simulators available on the market!

Learn more on the VirtaMed website today!


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Virtual Reality Simulation System Now Available for ACL Reconstruction

acl reconstruction simulator

VirtaMed has developed a virtual reality simulation for ACL reconstruction. This new orthopedic training module for knee arthroscopy will be available for the VirtaMed ArthroS simulator, and the company will introduce it at the AAOS 2016 conference in Orlando, FL.

Apparently, most of the technical skills of ACL reconstruction are currently learned on patients during clinical care delivery.

“It is challenging to translate three dimensional concepts into efficient and accurate surgical performance, especially when the procedure is visualized with two dimensional video arthroscopy. We need safer and more effective methods to reinforce these concepts of ACL anatomy and reconstruction – such as the VirtaMed ArthroS ACL Reconstruction Module.” – Dr. Robert A. Pedowitz, who was an invaluable help during the development of the ACL repair simulation.

In addition to simulating the actual procedure, the VirtaMed simulator provides trainees with extensive, high-quality didactic reading material created by Dr. Pedowitz. Furthermore, the simulator comes with a special 3-D training module, where trainees can easily explore the knee from all sides, shift the location of the replacement ACL with a simple click, and experiment how these adjustments affect the joint function. This unique teaching material, the use of original instruments, the tactile feedback provided by the anatomic knee model, and the highly realistic virtual reality environment make the VirtaMed ArthroS ACL reconstruction module the most advanced ACL repair training tool available.

Learn more on the News Medical Website!

CAE Healthcare Now Distributes VirtaMed Surgical Simulators to North America

virtamed surgical simulators

In HealthySim’s IMSH 2015 Exhibit Hall Highlights Reel, we shared that CAE Healthcare is now distributing European-based VirtaMed’s ArthroS Surgical Simulator in North America. ArthoS can easily swap out knee, shoulder, and FAST modules. The VirtaMed ArthroS offers risk-free training for knee and shoulder arthroscopy in a virtual reality environment. Learners practice with original surgical tools, and the anatomical rubber models provide the most accurate and realistic tactile sensation available today. Learner’s movements are captured on video, and the simulator records and stores performance data for objective assessment and debrief.

Knee Module:

The module presents basic skills, diagnostic and surgical cases for knee arthroscopy. 9 guided basic skill training cases fully integrated into a realistic simulation. Mastering these basic tasks enables trainees to perform a complete arthroscopy more easily and in an efficient, professional way. 8 patient cases with varying level of difficulty offer the trainee the chance to perform complete diagnostic arthroscopic interventions. Patients include different meniscus lesions, unhappy triad and arthrosis grade I-III. 11 patients with various lesions in different locations provide training for the first steps in operative arthroscopy using the operating equipment. Patients include different meniscus lesions, synovitial membrane inflammations and loose body removal.

Shoulder Module:

10 guided basic skill training cases fully integrated into a realistic simulation. Mastering these basic tasks enables trainees to perform a complete shoulder arthroscopy more easily and in an efficient, professional way. 10 different patients with varying level of difficulty offer the trainee the chance to perform complete diagnostic arthroscopic interventions. Patients include different lesions in rotator cuff and impingement syndrome. 7 patients with various lesions in different locations provide training for first steps in operative arthroscopy using OR equipment. Patients include loose body removal, subacromial debridement and decompression.

FAST Module:

9 motor skill training tasks on the FAST workstation guide the trainee through the first steps of arthroscopy. Basic camera navigation tasks include steadiness and image centering, horizon control and telescoping as well as the use of different optics – using both left and right hand for camera handling as well as frontal and posterior access to the FAST shell. This very basic arthroscopy skills training also teaches periscoping. Trainees learn how to detect and center an object, probe and grasp static objects, and develop triangulation skills.

Learn more at the CAE Healthcare VirtaMed ArthroS website!


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IMSH 2015 Exhibit Hall Video Highlights Reel!

IMSH 2015 was another showcase year for innovations in medical simulation. Starting off I visited with B-Line Medical booth, who announced a first for healthcare simulation with the ability to capture first person perspectives in their a/v recording platform.

google glass b-line medical

With no headaches on the user’s side, B-Line Medical customers will be able to directly integrate Google Glass devices as a POV camera feed into their SimCapture system. Imagine putting Google glass on your primary learner, your patient manikin or confederate standardized patient. Each one of those unique angles will provide increased fidelity and debriefing opportunities for learners outside the simulation lab.

Benefits of Using Google Glass and B-Line Medical’s SimCapture:

  • High Definition: Video Engineered to provide the highest definition and lowest latency video supported by Google Glass.
  • Unique Perspective: View simulation through the eyes of learners to gain a better perspective of their experience and provide more precise guidance on their technique.
  • Portability: Recording video over Wi-Fi to any SimCapture on your center’s internal network allows you to maintain the first-person point-of-view video no matter where you are in the room.

Laerdal’s LLEAP and Vitalsbridge

vitalsbridge

Next door, Laerdal showcased their new LLEAP software, which stands for Laerdal Learning Application. To simplify simulation, the new LLEAP software unifies the control of all PC operated Laerdal simulators in one intuitive platform. This software is free in 2015 for existing Laerdal customers and looks easy to learn for those already familiar with their platform — or just beginning into simulation.

Laerdal also showed off a new hardware innovation in the form of this small black box called Vitalsbridge — which makes it possible to hook up specific models of Philips or GE Healthcare clinical patient monitors directly to your SimMan 3G or SimMan Essential! *Note that new Vitalsbridge hardware will need to be installed by a Laerdal Field Service Engineer into your SimMan product. Vitalsbridge really increases fidelity for Laerdal customers operating simulation in their professional care environments.

CAE Healthcare’s Fidelis Module, Replay & VirtaMed announcement

cae healthcare fidelis

Lastly for this highlights video we stopped by CAE Healthcare, who unveiled a new module for their Fidelis Maternal Simulator which enables customers to convert Lucina to a standard female patient with a non-pregnant abdomen and new Clinical Scenarios. CAE Healthcare also showed off their new Replay mobile camera system and announced a partnership to distribute European based VirtaMed surgical training products in the United States and Canada.

There’s a lot more video content from IMSH 2015 coming soon so stay tuned to HealthySimulation.com!