Assessment of YouTube as an Educational Tool in Teaching Key Indicator Cases in Otolaryngology During the COVID-19 Pandemic and Beyond: Neck Dissection.

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



J Surg Educ


OBJECTIVES: YouTube has become the preferred resource for trainees in otolaryngology to prepare for surgery. This study aimed to compare the evaluation by 2 attending physicians and 2 resident physicians of the quality of videos on YouTube on neck dissection, a key indicator case in head and neck surgery. The authors aimed to assess the quality and quantity of YouTube videos available for development of a virtual surgical educational curriculum for trainees in otolaryngology.

METHODS: Using the YouTube search feature, the top 10 videos by relevance and view count were compiled using the following search terms: radical neck dissection, selective neck dissection, modified radical neck dissection, lateral neck dissection, levels I-III neck dissection, levels II-IV, left neck dissection, right neck dissection, cervical nodal dissection, and supraomohyoid neck dissection. A total of 37 videos on neck dissection were identified and analyzed using the LAP-VEGaS criteria as well as author-specific modified LAP-VEGaS criteria.

RESULTS: The mean comprehensive LAP-VEGaS score was 8.74 (SD 3.10). The majority of videos (24/37) were designated as medium quality; 10 of 37 videos were low quality and 3 of 37 videos were high quality. In the total group analysis, there was excellent inter-rater reliability between attending physicians (Cohen's kappa coefficient of 0.84) and good inter-rater reliability between resident physicians (Cohen's kappa coefficient of 0.58). There was no correlation between total view count, video age, or number of likes/dislikes and the overall LAP-VEGaS score. The presence of audio or written commentary had a moderate positive correlation with LAP-VEGaS score (adjusted R

CONCLUSIONS: Online videos of neck dissection represent an increasingly ubiquitous and appropriate resource for trainees in learning otolaryngology key indicator cases. While free-to-access video repositories, such as YouTube, have become increasingly popular among trainees as a primary resource for learning and preparing for surgical cases, they lack consistent quality and as such, global efforts should be taken to improve the breadth and depth of educational video content in otolaryngology.



This is an open access PubMed Central article.

Peer Reviewed


Open Access


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