International Perfusion Association


Simulated Cardiopulmonary Bypass: A High Fidelity Model for Developing and Accessing Clinical Perfusion Skills

Background: Traditionally, novice perfusionists learn and practice clinical skills, during live surgical procedures. The profession’s accrediting body is directing schools to implement simulated cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) into the curriculum. Unfortunately, no CPB simulation models have been validated. Here we describe the design and application of a CPB simulation model.

Methods: A CPB patient simulator was integrated into a representative operative theater and interfaced with a simple manikin, a heart-lung machine (HLM), clinical perfusion circuitry, and equipment. Participants completed a simulation scenario designed to represent a typical CPB procedure before completing an exit survey to assess the fidelity and validity of the experience. Questions were scored using a 5-point Likert scale.

Results: Participants (n = 81) contributed 953 opinions on 40 questions. The participants reported that the model of simulated CPB (1) realistically presented both the physiologic and technical parameters seen during CPB (n = 347, mean 4.37, SD 0.86), (2) accurately represented the psychological constructs and cognitive mechanisms of the clinical CPB (n = 139, mean 4.24, SD 1.08), (3) requires real clinical skills and reproduces realistic surgical case progression (n = 167, mean 4.38, SD 0.86), and (4) would be effective for teaching, practicing, and assessing the fundamental skills of CPB (n = 300, mean 4.54, SD 0.9). Participants agreed that their performance in the simulation scenario accurately predicted their performance in a real clinical setting (n = 43, mean 4.07, SD 1.03) CONCLUSION: This novel simulation model of CPB reproduces the salient aspects of clinical CPB and may be useful for teaching, practicing, and assessing fundamental skills.

Keywords: Cardiac surgery; Cardiopulmonary bypass; Clinical perfusionist; Education; Fidelity; Simulation; Validation.

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