Surgical Skills Laboratory | NYU Langone Health

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Department of Surgery Education Surgical Skills Laboratory

Surgical Skills Laboratory

An American College of Surgeons Accredited Education Institute, NYU Langone’s Surgical Skills Lab provides advanced technology and instruction to medical students and residents in a realistic learning environment. Our lab was one of the first in the country, and we continue to pioneer training in foundational and advanced skills and procedures in a stress-free setting.

Our lab is staffed for guided supervision 40 hours each week and is located at NYC Health + Hospitals/Bellevue, convenient to our training sites: NYU Langone’s Tisch Hospital and Kimmel Pavilion, Bellevue, and the Manhattan campus of the VA NY Harbor Healthcare System.

In the lab, trainees gain proficiency not only in technical skills, but also in skills such as adaptability and agile decision-making, communication, leadership and teamwork, and time management, which are critical to success as a surgeon.

Our lab follows the American College of Surgeons curriculum and is enriched by robust sessions including the following:

  • five-year robotics curriculum with one-on-one instruction and simulation
  • one-on-one instruction in preparation for the Fundamentals of Laparoscopic Surgery (FLS) and Fundamentals of Endoscopic Surgery (FES) assessments
  • the Advanced Surgical Skills for Exposure in Trauma (ASSET) course, which the lab hosts
  • eight-week intensive summer curriculum and additional skills sessions
  • collaborative events with industry that offer instruction in novel techniques and instruments

Skills Training for Medical Students

Lab manager Peggy Gluszak, RN, BSN, is actively involved with the medical student surgery club and runs hands-on skills sessions for first- and second-year medical students who are interested in a career in surgery.

Medical students have access to the lab only with supervision.

Skills Training for Interns and Residents

All interns in NYU Langone’s general surgery residencies in Manhattan and at NYU Langone Hospital—Brooklyn are required to attend an orientation of 13 surgical skills sessions regardless of subspecialty. This orientation covers topics such as the following:

  • proper instrument handling and other foundational skills
  • robotics
  • introduction to laparoscopic surgery
  • dissection
  • interpersonal, team-building, and emotional, interpersonal, and psychomotor skills
  • emergency surgical airway management
  • central venous line catheter placement
  • electrocautery
  • focused assessment with sonography for trauma (FAST)

As trainees progress through training, skills sessions focus more on general surgery topics and techniques that are appropriate to the surgical year and expectations of practice, such as bowel and vascular anastomosis sessions. Training in advanced laparoscopic techniques, stressing suturing instruction and practice, culminates in laparoscopic animal lab sessions at an off-site facility, in addition to bowel and vascular anastomosis sessions.

Additional programs use surgical simulators and upper and lower gastrointestinal endoscopy. Using a human patient simulator—the SimMan—trainees learn to care for a patient in a crisis situation as a member of team.

We also offer additional cadaver workshops that focus on anatomic basics of surgical dissection for senior residents.

The Surgical Skills Lab is open to interns and residents 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for independent practice. Peggy Gluszack, RN, BSN, manager of the Surgical Skills Lab, brings many years of experience to her role. She provides invaluable one-on-one instruction to residents during practice sessions as well as during preparation for the FLS and FES tests.

In addition to the Department of Surgery, other departments, divisions, and individuals at NYU Langone—including the Departments of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Ophthalmology, Neurosurgery, and Urology; the Division of Foot and Ankle Surgery; as well as cardiac fellows—use the lab for surgical skills curriculum and programs. Ms. Gluszak assists in coordinating their programs and provides oversight for independent practice.

Contact Us

Erica B. Friedman, MD, MS, is director of the Surgical Skills Lab. For more information or to schedule training, contact Ms. Gluszak at 212-263-3034 or peggy.gluszak@nyulangone.org.