Low-Cost Fishhook Removal Simulation
The target audiences for this hands-on innovation are health care providers including medical students and emergency medicine residents. This simulation is also appropriate for small group sessions teaching the layperson.
While generally not life-threating fishhook injuries are commonplace. They can end a day of recreation or an outdoor trip and possibly result in a visit to an emergency department or urgent care. Hands-on education on fishhook removal techniques that minimize tissue damage is rarely provided in wilderness first aid or traditional medical education. To the best of our knowledge, to date there are only two studies on fishhook removal simulations in medical and wilderness first aid education.1,2 The previously described simulation models are limited by accessibility of materials, realism, and cost.
The goal of this small group session is to fill the gap in training on fishhook injuries. At the end of the session participants should be able to describe the parts of a fishhook, as well as demonstrate and have increased confidence in performing multiple fishhook removal techniques.
Social learning theory is the conceptual framework for this small group session.3,4 This reflects the idea that students learn not only through repetition with trial and error, but through social interactions, observing and modeling successes of others. As a result, while this simulation requires a facilitator ensure the required items are available it does not necessitate a facilitator be present over the entire duration. Participants perform common fishhook removal techniques with hands-on skill development using commercially available silicone sponge injection pad trainers.
Evaluating this small group session at a wilderness medicine training attended by medical and physician assistant students and their guests, self-reported confidence in fishhook removal before and after the simulation was assessed with a paired t-test. Survey results of perceived effectiveness and value of the simulation were also evaluated.
The average confidence increased 58% after the simulation (p<0.005). The mean level of effectiveness was 87% and the participant perceived monetary value of the simulation materials was greater than actual cost.
This innovation is a cost-friendly way to provide education and practice on fishhook removal. It requires minimal set up time and pre-learning can be easily modified to the expected knowledge and experience of participants. Understanding the fishhook removal techniques and increased levels of confidence has the potential to make participants more efficient when caring for patients. It may result in greater likelihood of success in removing fishhooks with minimal tissue damage.
Fishhook injuries, medical simulation, emergency medical education, wilderness first aid, wound management, injection pad trainers.