This work presents developed methods for assessing epidural trainees within a virtual reality (VR) epidural simulator to identify accuracy of epidural placement and technique. Injuries that occur are often due to inadequate training since it can be hard to identify when trainees are ready to progress from practice insertions to patients in vivo.

An epidural procedure consists of inserting an 80 mm needle through lumber tissues and ligament to epidural space. After loss of resistance (LOR), the catheter is threaded and the needle removed.

Existing epidural simulators provide little or no scoring assessment and feedback [1] and do not allow testing of ultrasound guided needle insertion ability, which is now becoming a widely adopted procedure during epidurals. These aspects are developed in this work with virtual reality.

Currently, various curriculums are used for epidural training. We developed a new task-specific learning method with...

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