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Sensors, motion tracking, and data science: the quest to train MD’s like elite athletes

Wednesday, March 8, 2017 - 3:00pm to 4:00pm


Carla M. Pugh, M.D.
Susan Behrens, MD Professor of Surgical Education
Vice Chair of Education and Patient Safety
Clinical Director
MOC Portfolio Program and Clinical Simulation Program
Industrial and Systems Engineering
University of Wisconsin – Madison Department of Surgery


In the SEnSE lab, medical simulation and innovative technology are used to objectively assess clinical, hands-on performance. We are a multidisciplinary lab that includes people from a broad range of specialties. The team is comprised of individuals with backgrounds in engineering, medicine, kinesiology, biostatistics, and others working together towards improving medical education and the way clinical competency is assessed. The design and fabrication of sensorized simulators combine technology and clinical models that allow for the assessment of technical skill, operative skill, decision making and overall competency. These metrics hold great promise in setting objective performance standards for medical procedures.

Using these methods, the lab is currently working on a project to quantify clinical breast exam skills. Additionally, motion tracking technology is being used to quantify hands-on skills for numerous medical procedures including urinary catheterization, bowel anastomosis, laparoscopic ventral hernia repair and insertion of a central line. The long-term goal of the SEnSE lab is to build valid and reliable technologies that can be used to ensure that minimum performance standards are met by all healthcare professionals who perform hands-on clinical examinations and procedures and to help set clinical performance standards, by providing detailed performance feedback.

The page was last updated on Monday, September 19, 2016 - 5:59pm