Sleep-deprived residents can still master surgery

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted July 26, 2004

Print  |   Email  |   Respond  |   Reprints  |   Like Facebook  |   Share Twitter  |   Tweet Linkedin

There are plenty of studies that measure the negative impact of sleep deprivation. The latest look at how sleep impacts learning, however, runs counter to this trend.

Researchers at Pennsylvania's Temple University School of Medicine found that the demanding schedules of surgical residents don't necessarily leave them too sleep deprived to learn.

A study published in the June Surgical Endoscopy found that short-term sleep deficits do not appear to hinder the acquisition of basic laparoscopic skills.

The study looked at 40 residents participating in surgical skills training in Temple's surgical training laboratory. The amount of sleep they'd had on the preceding night was recorded, they then underwent a pretest, training, practice and a posttest using basic tasks such as a cup drop and rope pass along with task-specific drills like pattern cutting, clip application and loop application. Time to completion, penalty score, and total score were assessed.

The study found that training in the lab resulted in significant improvement of basic laparoscopic skills and short-term sleep deficits did not appear to hinder the acquisition of these skills,

Temple has developed a surgical training laboratory and is building a new clinical simulation lab to give residents more opportunity to learn and practice surgical skills now that residents' work hours are limited to an average of 80 per week.

Note: This item originally appeared at

Back to top



Read story

Confronting bias against obese patients

Medical educators are starting to raise awareness about how weight-related stigma can impair patient-physician communication and the treatment of obesity. Read story

Read story


American Medical News is ceasing publication after 55 years of serving physicians by keeping them informed of their rapidly changing profession. Read story

Read story

Policing medical practice employees after work

Doctors can try to regulate staff actions outside the office, but they must watch what they try to stamp out and how they do it. Read story

Read story

Diabetes prevention: Set on a course for lifestyle change

The YMCA's evidence-based program is helping prediabetic patients eat right, get active and lose weight. Read story

Read story

Medicaid's muddled preventive care picture

The health system reform law promises no-cost coverage of a lengthy list of screenings and other prevention services, but some beneficiaries still might miss out. Read story

Read story

How to get tax breaks for your medical practice

Federal, state and local governments offer doctors incentives because practices are recognized as economic engines. But physicians must know how and where to find them. Read story

Read story

Advance pay ACOs: A down payment on Medicare's future

Accountable care organizations that pay doctors up-front bring practice improvements, but it's unclear yet if program actuaries will see a return on investment. Read story

Read story

Physician liability: Your team, your legal risk

When health care team members drop the ball, it's often doctors who end up in court. How can physicians improve such care and avoid risks? Read story

  • Stay informed
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • RSS
  • LinkedIn