• SEP 12, 2018

    Using Education Videos to Teach Sterile Surgical Technique

    Rachel Khadaroo MD, PhD, FRCSC

    We were inspired to create these videos on sterile surgical technique for several reasons; at our center there is a single nurse educator who teaches groups of medical students scrub technique at one time; we often rely on the what residents have learned as students without reviewing their technique; and we wanted to have a resource that anyone who was going to attend an operation could access at any time.   What started out as an idea quickly became a 7-part, 30-minute video series with videos on surgical dress, waterless and water-based scrub technique, assisted and self-gowning and gloving, and how to maintain sterility in the OR while avoiding common errors.  Our goal was to have the videos be comprehensive, patient-centered and easy to follow.  Our ultimate hope is that better sterile surgical technique translates into better patient care and fewer surgical site infections (SSIs).


    We hoped that trainees would learn and remember proper technique by using narration, demonstration, and on-screen text. To test the efficacy of our videos, we published a randomized-controlled trial in the Surgical Infections Journal. We found that students who watched our videos out-performed students who attended a nurse-education session on a multiple-choice quiz designed to test knowledge on scrubbing in. Students also told us that they thought the videos were more convenient, accessible, efficient and useful for review when compared to the nurse-education session.


    Since these videos were published last year, they have been endorsed by the Surgical Infection Society and used to train medical students and residents in many centres. Students continue to appreciate the accessibility and convenience of videos, and we hope you will to. Please take a look at our videos and tell us what you think; you can find them on the Surgical Infection Society’s YouTube channel.


    If you are an educator and interested in using our videos to teach sterile surgical technique, please consider using the multiple-choice quiz we created to compliment the videos. The quiz and additional resources, including a water-based scrub timing chart and surgical scrub technique summary card, can be found on the SIS website.