Atsushi Nanashima1, Kengo Kai1, Takeomi Hamada1, Shun Munakata1, Naoya İmamura1, Masahide Hiyoshi1, Kiyoaki Hamada1, Ikko Shimizu1, Yuki Tsuchimochi1, Isao Tsuneyoshi2

1Department of Surgery, University of Miyazaki Faculty of Medicine, Miyazaki, Japan
2Department of Anesthesiology, University of Miyazaki Faculty of Medicine, Miyazaki, Japan


We developed a prototype VR platform, VECTORS L&M (VLM), aiming to enhance the understanding of digestive surgery for students, interns, and young surgeons by limiting costs. Its efficacy was assessed via questionnaires before implementation in surgical education. The VLM provides nine-minute VR views of surgeries, from both 180- and 360-degree angles. It was created with L.A.B. Co., Ltd. and incorporates surgery videos from biliary malignancy patients. Following VLM development, a survey was conducted among surgeons who had experienced it. Twenty-eight participants (32% of observers) responded to the survey. A majority (81%) reported positive experiences with the VR content and showed interest in VR video production, though some reported sickness. Most respondents were experienced surgeons, and nearly all believed VR was important for medical education with a mean score of 4.14 on a scale of up to 5. VR was preferred over 3D printed models due to its application versatility. Participants expressed the desire for future VR improvements, such as increased mobility, cloud connectivity, cost reduction, and better resolution. The VLM platform, coupled with this innovative teaching approach, offers experiential learning in intraabdominal surgery, effectively enriching the knowledge of students and surgeons ahead of surgical education and training.

Keywords: Surgical education, medical staff, internship doctors, digestive surgery, virtual reality

Cite this article as: Nanashima A, Kai K, Hamada T, Munakata S, Imamura N, Hiyoshi M, et al. Questionnaire survey of virtual reality experiences of digestive surgery at a rural academic institute: A pilot study for pre-surgical education. Turk J Surg 2023; 39 (4): 328-335.


Peer Review

Externally peer-reviewed.

Conflict of Interest

The authors have no conflicts of interest to declare.

Financial Disclosure

This study was supported by a Grant-in-Aid for Clinical Research from Miyazaki University Hospital 2023.


We gratefully appreciate Mr. Takahiro Noshita, Hideto Todaka, and Akiyoshi Kurogi, who are senior staff members and president of L.A.B. Cooperation Ltd., Miyazaki, Japan (https://livecity. respectively. They spent plenty of time and work efforts making the present original VR video in the operating room and exhibited it for introducing VR video to the attending surgeons at our Kyushu district surgical congress for two days. English has been well edited by the expert editing company, Elsevier (Order reference: ASLESTD0487127, completed May 26 with certification).