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Summa Center for Preclinical Research and Skills Training

Summa Health System – Akron City Hospital

The  Summa Center for Preclinical Research and Skills Training  (previously the Applied Surgical Research Unit) is staffed with a team of professionals that (1) supports the development and conduct of pre-clinical research studies using animals (2) supports the development and conduct of educational programs that are focused upon experimental and applied surgery, using both animate and inanimate models. 

Clients : The clients utilizing the resources of the PRST include physicians, residents, investigators, educators and students from Summa Health System, Northeast Ohio Medical University, the University of Akron, Kent State University, and representatives of the medical device industry. 

Education Programs : The PRST has incorporated animate and inanimate skills training models into an educational curriculum for Summa Health System’s General Surgery, OB/GYN, Urology, and Emergency Medicine physicians, residents and medical students. The skills lab hosts a range of skills programs including - laparoscopic training, suture/knot tying training, endoscopy and microsurgery training and is continuously building its overall educational curriculum. The PRST is also a regional testing site for the Fundamentals in Laparoscopic Surgery. This program has been developed by the Society of American Gastrointestinal Endoscopic Surgeons (SAGES) to teach and assess cognitive knowledge and technical skills fundamental to the performance of basic laparoscopic surgery. The PRST maintains three (3) FLS systems that are used for resident training. The PRST also provides full service support for industry sponsored education programs. These support services include OR video feed, access to classrooms, video/computer support, catering, animate labs, and wet lab space.

Research Programs : The PRST also supports the development and conduct of applied surgical research projects using animal models. In collaboration with Summa’s Core Research Programs, physicians and residents, PRST staff conducts preclinical research primarily using large animal models for both industry-sponsored and original research. The PRST staff is experienced with laboratory animal management, husbandry and surgical techniques. The staff welcomes the opportunity to discuss your research needs.

Facilities & Equipment : The PRST is an AAALAC accredited (#000610) and USDA registered (#31-R-0033) research facility and features two fully equipped aseptic surgery suites, a microsurgery suite, a training and education suite and all necessary ancillary support rooms. Specialized equipment that is available includes - inhalation anesthesia, electro-surgery units, microsurgery scope, ultrasound, EKG and physiologic parameter monitors, 5 high definition laparoscopic surgery towers with HD video capture. The lab also features - digital photography/video systems along with a computerized data/image collection and analysis system. The surgical skills center features - an American College of Surgery style skills training curriculum, several SAGES - Fundamentals of Laparoscopic Surgery trainers, HD laparoscopic towers, a brochoscopy/endoscopy training unit, a variety of laparoscopic box trainers, a laparoscopic camera navigation training unit, 15 suture training boards, 15 knot tying boards, vascular and bowel anastomosis trainers, a floor stand microscope for microsurgery training and DVD video capabilities.