Publication Date



Open access

Embargo Period


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PHD)


Ergonomics (Engineering)

Date of Defense


First Committee Member

Shihab Asfour

Second Committee Member

Francesco Travascio

Third Committee Member

Arzu Onar-Thomas

Fourth Committee Member

Moataz Eltoukhy

Fifth Committee Member

Mohamed Fahmy


Laparoscopic training with visual force feedback can lead to immediate improvements in force moderation. However, the long-term retention of this kind of learning and its potential decay are yet unclear. A laparoscopic resection task and force sensing apparatus were designed to assess the benefits of visual force feedback training. Idealized force parameters for both pushing and pulling forces were derived from a pilot study with experienced UM laparoscopic surgeons. A randomized longitudinal experiment was conducted with students with no experience in laparoscopy. The results showed that visual force feedback improved on certain aspects of force moderation, such as tapering of extreme force values. No significant decay of applied force learning was found during the first month after training. It is essential to account for differences in aptitude between individuals in this type of longitudinal research. This study shows how an inexpensive force measuring system can be used with an FLS Trainer System after some retrofitting. Surgical instructors can develop their own tasks and adjust force feedback levels accordingly.


laparoscopy training; visual force feedback; force moderation; retention of learning