Several areas within Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center and on the Dartmouth College campus are available to the Orthopaedics Department for teaching the basic sciences, including:
Patient Safety Training Center (PSTC)
This 8,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art simulation center at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center features high-tech mannequins and simulation equipment to produce realistic clinical scenarios to train caregivers in a safe learning environment. Using these lifelike patient simulators, medical staff are able to hone and improve their skills in a multitude of environments including the operating room, emergency room, and ICU through repetition and practice. Specifically for orthopaedics, a three-dimensional computerized arthroscopy simulator is available to develop and improve surgical arthroscopy skills in the knee and shoulder. Once the resident has mastered the ability to perform diagnostic arthroscopy (based on a computerized grading system) the learner advances to the challenges of many surgical arthroscopy cases (including ACL reconstruction, meniscal repair, rotator cuff repair, distal clavicle excision, etc.). This method of learning where skills are taught and reinforced through repetition is much more powerful than the traditional apprenticeship model used in orthopaedic surgery where the junior resident often learns by observation for an extended period of time. Our PGY-1 Bioskills course is taught throughout the year at the PSTC using sawbone materials and orthopaedic equipment to gain skills in spine, arthroplasty and trauma surgical techniques.
Dartmouth Biomedical Engineering Lab and Thayer School of Engineering
Comprising more than 1,000 square feet of space, this lab is in active use for hard tissue and biomaterials processing under the direction of Dr. Doug Van Citters from the Thayer School of Engineering. In various stages of analysis are over 6,000 specimens of retrieved human joint components, making this retrieval collection the world's largest. Contained in the laboratory are all forms of equipment needed to perform appropriate analysis, including photomicroscopes, video cameras and high-tech resolution monitors.
Anatomy and dissection room
The Department of Anatomy at Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth includes a full-featured cadaver dissection facility that is available and used for anatomy teaching. Additional cadaver specimens and limbs are frequently made available throughout the year for special purposes. Anatomical dissections are performed annually during the anatomy dissection course and the PGY-1 Bioskills course.
Various resources and equipment are available in several of these settings, including up-to-date digital photography equipment, playback monitors, computers throughout the department for residents and staff, and scanners and photocopiers.
Center for Surgical Innovation
In the CSI, residents can practice anatomical dissections on fresh frozen cadavers.