Computer simulation surgery (CSS) utilizes techniques of computer graphics to simulate morphological changes which occur during surgery. The purpose of this study is to use CSS as a teaching model to aid in the surgical training of TRAM flap surgery. The patient model is created using a layering technique of 75 photographs taken in the operating room from a camera at a fixed distance from the patient. A light pen is used to allow on screen manipulations there by eliminating the traditional mouse-based graphic interface.
A bilateral TRAM flap breast reconstruction was simulated using CSS. The important anatomical landmarks for flap design, flap elevation, and abdominal closure are demonstrated. A trainee can experience the simulated surgery prior to performing the operation. Additional applications include the use of CSS for international exchange of information using on-line information such as the Internet.
The simulation was demonstrated by Dr. Mark Codner with assistance from Jon Guffey at the Southeastern Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons Conference in Palm Beach, Fl. June 1-5, 1996 and at the International Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons Conference in Dallas, TX. Nov. 10-15, 1996.