Objective: To develop and validate a training model for the robotic intracorporeal bowel anastomosis. Methods: For simulation, surgeons with varying levels of experience were instructed about bowel anastomosis robotic surgical simulation in a short educational video. All participants performed the required steps for the intracorporeal bowel anastomosis under standardized conditions. The procedure consists of the following steps: division of the bowel with a stapler (1), incision and opening of the bowel limbs at the antimesenteric angle (2), insertion of the stapler into the 2 bowel limbs for the side-to-side anastomosis (3), and transverse closure of the anastomosis with the stapler (4). All simulations were performed using the daVinci SI robotic system. Face and content validity were assessed using a standardized questionnaire. Construct validity was evaluated using the Global Evaluative Assessment of Robotic Skills, a validated global performance rating scale. Results: Twenty-two surgeons participated including 6 robotic experts and 16 trainees. The expert participants rated the bowel anastomosis model highly for face validity (median 4/5; 64% agree or strongly agree), and all participants rated the content as a training model very highly (median 4.5/5; 100% agree or strongly agree). Discrimination between experts and trainees using Global Evaluative Assessment of Robotic Skills demonstrated construct validity (novice 17.6 vs expert 24.7, P =.03). Conclusion: We demonstrate that the bowel anastomosis robotic surgical simulator is a reproducible and realistic simulation that allows for an objective skills assessment. We establish face, content, and construct validity for this model. This step-by-step technique may be utilized in training surgeons desiring to acquire skills in robotic intracorporeal urinary diversion.
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