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Self-made transvaginal ultrasound simulator: new training equipment in ultrasound evaluation of controlled ovarian stimulation and oocyte retrieval

Marcelo Borges Cavalcante1,2,3, Sebastião Marques Zanforlin Filho2, Winnie Bastos Nunes Chagouri Ocké2, Maria Madalena Pessoas Caldas2,3, Pedro Henrique Alcantara da Silva2, Alexandre Andrade Ferraz2, Cláudio Rodrigues Pires2, Edward Araujo Júnior4,5

Affiliation and address for correspondence
J Ultrason 2023;23: e73–e79
DOI: 10.15557/JoU.2023.0014

Aim: We sought to create and describe a self-made simulator designed and created for teaching purposes: a high-fidelity ultrasound phantom for demonstrating antral follicle count, ultrasound supervision of controlled of ovarian stimulation, and ultrasound-guided oocyte retrieval. Materials and methods: The uterus and ovaries of the ultrasound phantom were made from beef tongue, a male condom, latex gloves, cotton suture threads, bi-distilled water, and ultrasound gel. The components were placed in a pelvis created using three-dimensional (3D) printing. The phantom was presented to and evaluated by a group of 14 physicians pursuing a postgraduate course in reproductive medicine. Two training stations were structured: one to simulate antral follicle count and controlled ovarian stimulation and the other to simulate ultrasoundguided oocyte retrieval. Future specialists were requested to complete a feedback questionnaire evaluating the self-made simulator and the two practice stations. Results: The transvaginal ultrasound phantom was successfully created, making it possible to simulate antral follicle count, ultrasound control of ovarian hyperstimulation, and oocyte retrieval, and to capture ultrasound images. A review of the answers provided in the feedback questionnaire showed that the phantom had a good appearance and design, was realistic, helped to improve motor coordination, and could be a useful tool in the training of specialists in assisted reproduction. Conclusion: This phantom was designed to enable instruction and practice in the evaluation of ovarian follicles and ultrasound-guided oocyte retrieval in a supervised training environment. This selfmade simulator is proposed as a training tool that could be included in the curricular structure of residency and postgraduate programs in reproductive medicine.

ultrasound phantom; homemade simulator; simulation; oocyte retrieval; antral follicle count