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Gathering and sharing evidence

Young Ophthalmologists Programme will take full advantage of live online format

Howard Larkin

Posted: Tuesday, February 9, 2021

Tales from the training front and recent evidence-based cataract surgery teaching techniques will be featured in an interactive online format at the 25th ESCRS Winter Meeting Virtual 2021 Young Ophthalmologists Programme, according to programme chair Oliver Findl MD, chief of the Department of Ophthalmology at Hanusch Hospital, Vienna, Austria.

The programme commences at 8.30 CET Saturday 20 February with Richard B Packard MD, FRCS, FRCOphth, London, UK, sharing the most common tips he gives his trainees. A pioneer in phacoemulsification in Europe and one of the earliest users of foldable IOLs, Dr Packard has decades of experience practicing and teaching to draw upon.

Taking full advantage of the live online format, the first Learning from the Learners segment features six videos of early operations submitted by young ophthalmologists, followed by an expert panel discussion with audience questions. “It’s good to share the common mistakes most people make. You can see others have made them, so maybe you won’t make them yourself, or that others are having the same challenges you are,” Dr Findl said.

A second Learning from the Learners segment will tackle more risky cases from later in training. The cases to be presented were selected from dozens of videos submitted by young ophthalmologists, and were chosen for their instructive value, Dr Findl said. He believes the interactive online format is ideal for delivering this material.

EVIDENCE-BASED TEACHING
Rounding out the programme will be a session on teaching the teachers. Its aim is to spread the word on recently developed techniques for teaching phacoemulsification surgery. “There are very different schools of thought on teaching throughout Europe. The idea is to gather and share evidence from trials to identify more-suitable methods,” Dr Findl said.

These methods include using wet labs and simulators before moving to live surgery, Dr Findl said. Wet labs have been widely used for some time, but the use of simulators has been limited by the availability of equipment in some areas.

Another effective method is to train in reverse. Starting trainees on the simpler, later steps, such as removing viscoelastic and inserting lenses helps them master the equipment and technique before tackling more difficult steps such as cracking the nucleus and capsulorhexis, Dr Findl said. This not only improves learning; it moves operations along to stay on schedule in busy centres. “I believe it is very useful, I train that way myself and I wish I had been trained that way. It is simply a better technique.”

Young Ophthalmologists Programme Saturday 20 February | Room 2 | 08.30 – 10.30. See here