“A Tree Must Be Bent While It Is Young”: Teaching Urological Surgical Techniques to Schoolchildren


Stefan Buntrock 1 , *

1 Klinik am Kurpark, Center for Rehabilitative Urology, Bad Wildungen, Germany

How to Cite: Buntrock S. “A Tree Must Be Bent While It Is Young”: Teaching Urological Surgical Techniques to Schoolchildren, Nephro-Urol Mon. 2012 ; 4(2):e93976. doi: 10.5812/numonthly.1637.


Nephro-Urology Monthly: 4 (2); e93976
Published Online: April 01, 2012
Article Type: Research Article
Received: May 18, 2019
Accepted: July 23, 2011


Background: Playing video games in childhood may help achieve advanced laparoscopic skills later in life. The virtual operating room will soon become a reality, as “doctor games 2.0” will doubtlessly begin to incorporate virtual laparoscopic techniques.

Objectives: To teach surgical skills to schoolchildren in order to attract them to urology as a professional choice later in life.

Materials and Methods: As part of EAU Urology Week 2010, 108 school children aged 15–19 attended a seminar with lectures and simulators (laparoscopy, TUR, cystoscopy, and suture sets) at the 62nd Congress of the German Society of Urology in Düsseldorf. A Pub-Med and Google Scholar search was also performed in order to review the beneficial effects of early virtual surgical training. MeSh terms used were “video games,” “children,” and “surgical skills.” Searches were performed without restriction for a certain period of time.

Results: In terms of publicity for urology, EAU Urology Week, and the German Society of Urology, the event was immensely successful. Regarding the literature search, four relevant publications were found involving children. An additional three articles evaluated the usefulness of video gaming in medical students and residents.

Conclusions: Making use of virtual reality to attract and educate a new generation of urologists is an important step in designing the future of urology.


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