Does Training of the Nondominant Upper Extremity Reduce the Surgeon's Muscular Strain During Laparoscopy?: Results From a Randomized Controlled Trial
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SourceSurgical Innovation, 20, 3, (2013), pp. 292-298
Article / Letter to editor
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SubjectDCN MP - Plasticity and memory; NCEBP 12: Human Reproduction; NCEBP 12: Human Reproduction
Introduction. In laparoscopy, suboptimal ergonomics frequently lead to morbidity for surgeons. Physical complaints are more commonly reported on the dominant upper extremity. This may be the consequence of challenging laparoscopic tasks being easier to perform with the dominant side. The authors hypothesized that specific training of the nondominant upper extremity may equip this side better and lead to a more equal distribution of physical load. Materials and methods. Participants (medical doctors) were randomized to a 3-week training schedule or no training. The training program consisted of training the nondominant upper extremity. Participants were not allowed to train on a laparoscopic box or virtual reality trainer during the study period. Baseline and outcome measurements after 3 weeks were examined with the use of EMG measurements during a validated task on a laparoscopic box trainer. Muscle strain of the trapezius and deltoid muscles and effective alternation of brachioradial and abductor pollicis brevis muscles were used as outcome variables. Results. In all, 26 participants were included. EMG analysis revealed that participants in both intervention and control groups showed a decrease in muscle strain of trapezius and deltoid muscles. However, there were no significant differences between groups. Those in the intervention group showed significantly better alternation in the brachioradial muscle. Conclusion. Training the nondominant upper extremity leads to better alternated use of lower-arm muscles during a validated box trainer task. Repeating the task after 3 weeks led to less muscle tension in the trapezius and deltoid muscles.
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