DOI: 10.3138/jvme-2023-0080 ISSN:

Teaching Tip: Design and Implementation of a Safe Equine Radiation-Free Radiographic Simulator for Veterinary Skills Training in the Pre-clinical Curriculum

Gayle S. Leith, Lisa Hallam, Ryane E. Englar
  • General Veterinary
  • Education
  • General Medicine

The ninth standard of accreditation as outlined by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) Council on Education (COE) mandates that all accredited colleges of veterinary medicine must provide instruction in medicine and surgery, including principles of practice, hands-on experiences with diagnostic methods, and interpretation of clinical findings. In equine practice, diagnostic imaging is used as a first-line diagnostic approach and is an integral part of pre-purchase and lameness examinations. Accuracy and consistency of radiographic interpretation relies heavily upon procedural techniques to acquire diagnostic images and overcome both motion artifacts and obliquity. Because the sizes and temperaments of equine patients potentiate hazardous working conditions for the veterinary team, learners might benefit from simulations that allow them to practice holding the x-ray generator and the imaging plate for diagnostic image acquisition in the absence of live horses. This teaching tip describes the development of a novel equine radiographic simulator for skills training in the veterinary curriculum. The model allows learners to handle imaging equipment safely and without radiation exposure as they develop proficiency positioning radiographic plates and placing directional markers. Learners can also test their understanding of radiographic positioning in reverse: if given a radiograph, they can be asked to describe how the x-ray generator was positioned to obtain the diagnostic image. Future iterations will investigate the simulator's efficacy with respect to learning outcomes when the model is paired with an assessment rubric as part of an objective standardized clinical examination.

More from our Archive