Teaching basic lung isolation skills on human anatomy simulator: Attainment and retention of lung isolation skills

Rana K. Latif, Edgar M. VanHorne, Sunitha Kanchi Kandadai, Alexander F. Bautista, Aurel Neamtu, Anupama Wadhwa, Mary B. Carter, Craig H. Ziegler, Mohammed Faisal Memon, Ozan Akça

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Lung isolation skills, such as correct insertion of double lumen endobronchial tube and bronchial blocker, are essential in anesthesia training; however, how to teach novices these skills is underexplored. Our aims were to determine (1) if novices can be trained to a basic proficiency level of lung isolation skills, (2) whether video-didactic and simulation-based trainings are comparable in teaching lung isolation basic skills, and (3) whether novice learners' lung isolation skills decay over time without practice. Methods: First, five board certified anesthesiologist with experience of more than 100 successful lung isolations were tested on Human Airway Anatomy Simulator (HAAS) to establish Expert proficiency skill level. Thirty senior medical students, who were naive to bronchoscopy and lung isolation techniques (Novice) were randomized to video-didactic and simulation-based trainings to learn lung isolation skills. Before and after training, Novices' performances were scored for correct placement using pass/fail scoring and a 5-point Global Rating Scale (GRS); and time of insertion was recorded. Fourteen novices were retested 2 months later to assess skill decay. Results: Experts' and novices' double lumen endobronchial tube and bronchial blocker passing rates showed similar success rates after training (P >0.99). There were no differences between the video-didactic and simulation-based methods. Novices' time of insertion decayed within 2 months without practice. Conclusion: Novices could be trained to basic skill proficiency level of lung isolation. Video-didactic and simulation-based methods we utilized were found equally successful in training novices for lung isolation skills. Acquired skills partially decayed without practice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number7
JournalBMC Anesthesiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 20 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Comparative effectiveness
  • Lung isolation skills
  • Simulation-based
  • Teaching
  • Video-didactic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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