Assessment of a high-fidelity mobile simulator for intrauterine contraception training in ambulatory reproductive health centres

AuthorLaura E. Dodge, Michele R. Hacker, Sarah H. Averbach, Sara F. Voit, Maureen E. Paul


Little is known about the utility of simulation-based training in office gynaecology. The objective of this cross-sectional study was to evaluate the self-reported effectiveness and acceptability of the PelvicSim™ (VirtaMed), a highfidelity mobile simulator, to train clinicians in intrauterine device (IUD) insertion.


Clinicians at ambulatory healthcare centres participated in a PelvicSim IUD training programme and completed a self-administered survey. The survey assessed prior experience with IUD insertion, pre- and post-training competency and comfort and opinions regarding the acceptability of the PelvicSim.


The 237 participants were primarily female (97.5%) nurse practitioners (71.3%). Most had experience inserting the levonorgestrel LNG20 IUD and the copper T380A device, but only 4.1% had ever inserted the LNG14 IUD. For all three devices, participants felt more competent following training, with the most striking change reported for insertion of the LNG14 IUD. The majority of participants reported increased comfort with uterine sounding (57.7%), IUD insertion on a live patient (69.8%), and minimizing patient pain (72.8%) following training.

Of the respondents, 89.6% reported the PelvicSim IUD insertion activities as “valuable” or “very valuable.” All participants would recommend the PelvicSim for IUD training, and nearly all (97.2%) reported that the PelvicSim was a better method to teach IUD insertion than the simple plastic models supplied by IUD manufacturers.


These findings support the use of the PelvicSim for IUD training, though whether it is superior to traditional methods and improves patient outcomes requires evaluation.