A virtual reality based simulator for learning nasogastric tube placement

Kup Sze Choi, Xuejian He, Chung Lim Vico Chiang, Zhaohong Deng

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Nasogastric tube (NGT) placement is a common clinical procedure where a plastic tube is inserted into the stomach through the nostril for feeding or drainage. However, the placement is a blind process in which the tube may be mistakenly inserted into other locations, leading to unexpected complications or fatal incidents. The placement techniques are conventionally acquired by practising on unrealistic rubber mannequins or on humans. In this paper, a virtual reality based training simulation system is proposed to facilitate the training of NGT placement. It focuses on the simulation of tube insertion and the rendering of the feedback forces with a haptic device. A hybrid force model is developed to compute the forces analytically or numerically under different conditions, including the situations when the patient is swallowing or when the tube is buckled at the nostril. To ensure real-time interactive simulations, an offline simulation approach is adopted to obtain the relationship between the insertion depth and insertion force using a non-linear finite element method. The offline dataset is then used to generate real-time feedback forces by interpolation. The virtual training process is logged quantitatively with metrics that can be used for assessing objective performance and tracking progress. The system has been evaluated by nursing professionals. They found that the haptic feeling produced by the simulated forces is similar to their experience during real NGT insertion. The proposed system provides a new educational tool to enhance conventional training in NGT placement.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)103-115
Number of pages13
JournalComputers in Biology and Medicine
Volume57
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2015

Keywords

  • Clinical simulation
  • Haptic rendering
  • Intubation
  • Nasogastric tube
  • Nursing skills training
  • Virtual reality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Health Informatics

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