The European School of Urology (ESU) and EAU Section of Uro-Technology (ESUT) started hands-on-training (HOT) sessions in 2007 along with structured European Basic Laparoscopic Urological Skills (EBLUS) examinations in 2013. EBLUS includes an online theoretical course, HOT by expert tutors on a set of dry-lab exercises, and finally a standardised examination for skill assessment and certification.

To analyse the results and predictors of success from the EBLUS examinations that were conducted during the European Urology Residents Education Programme (EUREP) and other international and national dedicated ESU events.

ESU has been delivering EBLUS courses and examinations over the past 6 yr (2013-2018) in more than 40 countries worldwide. Trainees were asked about their laparoscopic background (procedures assisted/performed) and about the availability of HOT or simulator/box trainer in their facility. Apart from the online theoretical course, 4 HOT tasks [(1) peg transfer, (2) pattern cutting, (3) single knot tying, and (4) clip and cut] with its quality assessment of depth perception, bimanual dexterity, and efficiency were a part of the assessment and were considered critical to pass the EBLUS examination.

A total of 875 EBLUS examinations were delivered (EUREP, n=385; other ESU events, n=490), with complete data available for 533 (61%) participants among which 295 (55%) passed the examinations. Pass rate increased on a yearly basis from 35% to 70% (p<0.001) and was similar between EUREP (56%) and other ESU/ESUT events (55%). The significant predictors of success were passing tasks 1 [odds ratio (OR): 869.9, 95% confidence interval (CI): 89.6-8449.0, p<0.001] and 2 (OR: 3045.0, 95% CI: 99.2-93 516.2, p<0.001) of the examinations. A limitation of EBLUS was its inability to provide more advanced training such as wet-lab or cadaveric training.

Over the past few years more trainees have passed the European Basic Laparoscopic Urological Skills (EBLUS) examinations. Trainees who spend more time on laparoscopic procedures demonstrated a better performance and pass rate. We found almost no difference between the EBLUS results collected from EUREP and other ESU/ESUT events, which confirms the robustness of the training and examinations conducted worldwide.

Training in laparoscopy helps trainees pass the European Basic Laparoscopic Urological Skills (EBLUS) examinations, reflected by an increase in the pass rate over the past 6 yr. Our results also confirm the robustness of EBLUS training and examinations worldwide.

European urology focus. 2019 Jan 17 [Epub ahead of print]

Bhaskar K Somani, Ben Van Cleynenbreugel, Ali-Serdar Gözen, Andreas Skolarikos, Christian Wagner, John Beatty, Sas Barmoshe, Jose Maria Gaya Sopena, Theodoros Kalogeropoulos, Oscar Rodriguez Faba, Rafael Sanchez Salas, Marek Schmidt, Giampaolo Siena, Giovannalberto Pini, Joan Palou, Robert Geraghty, Domenico Veneziano

University of Southampton, Southampton, UK. Electronic address: ., Department of Urology, University Hospital Gasthuisberg, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Leuven, Belgium., Department of Urology, SLK Klinikum Heilbronn, Heilbronn, Germany., Department of Urology, University of Athens, Athens, Greece., Department of Urology and Oncology, St. Antonius-Hospital, Gronau, Germany., Leicester University Hospital NHS Trust, Leicester, UK., Department of Urology, Erasme Hospital, University Clinics of Brussels, Brussels, Belgium., Department of Urology, Fundaciò Puigvert, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain., Department of Urology, Saint Savvas Hospital, Athens, Greece., Department of Urology, Institut Mutualiste Montsouris, Paris, France., Department of Urology, University Hospital Motol, Prague, Czech Republic., Department of Urology, The Azienda Ospedaliero-Universitaria di Careggi, Florence, Italy., Department of Urology, Ospedale San Raffaele – Turro, Milan, Italy., University of Southampton, Southampton, UK., Department of Urology and Kidney Transplant, Grande Ospedale Metropolitano, Reggio Calabria, Italy.