Sensor Technology in Assessments of Clinical Skill
Medical simulators are a rapidly growing field, which provides an environment for students and clinicians to learn and train in a setting similar to the clinical environment. My research revolves around two main fields: 1) Developing and integrating new and advanced sensors into medical simulators, with an emphasis on measuring clinical skill and mastery. 2) Developing new and advanced algorithms for analyzing the data measured by the sensors.
In my talk I will preset my work on the clinical breast examination (CBE). It this study, by integrating a silicone based breast simulator with an advanced pressure mapping system and video recording, we were able to measure CBE performance data from over 500 experienced physicians. The study, which was recently published in New England Journal of Medicine, revealed that some physicians demonstrate poor performance and are at high risk of missing deep masses due to lack of pressure while performing the CBE. Video analysis of the same physicians showed that some palpation techniques correlate with better CBE accuracy. The benefits of this approach include the ability to collect large quantities of data, measure properties that are not necessarily visible to the naked eye and provide information which is clinically significant.
I will also discuss different algorithms for analyzing the data and classifying human performance and how this work can relate to the basic understanding of human touch and perception. Finally I will display our most recent study that uses motion tracking sensors for measuring surgical skill and quantifying skill decay. This work combines clinical significance, advanced technology, complex data analysis, motion analysis and the opportunity to further understand human psychomotor skills and haptics.