Contact Information & FAQs

Regional Anesthesia Study Center of Iowa
University of Iowa Health Care
Department of Anesthesia
200 Hawkins Drive , 6 JCP
owa City, IA 52242-1079
Phone: 319-384-9273
Fax: 319-356-2940

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. Do delegates get to put needles into the human models? NO. Only the lecturers actually insert needles into any human during the demonstrations.
  2. Are the people having needles inserted into them patients? NO. They are all volunteers recruited independently of the lecturers. They get paid for their services. However as being a model requires partial disrobing to expose the groin or buttocks etcetera, the demonstration is made as a simulation of patient care and the audience is asked to conduct themselves in similar respectful fashion as they would during a teaching ward in front of real patients.
  3. Do delegates insert any needles? YES. Delegates insert needles into gelatine nerve-tissue phantoms, plastic skin phantoms and into anesthetized pigs.
  4. May the delegates touch the models? YES. During the ultrasound imaging sessions the delegates place transducers onto the models and touch them. Please do this in a polite fashion and thank the volunteers for their assistance with the workshops.
  5. Do the pigs feel anything when needle get inserted into them and is it cruel to use pigs? NO and NO. The pigs are asleep under anesthesia and do not respond to the needle insertions any differently than the fashion an anesthetized human undergoing identical procedures would respond. The pigs were they not subjected to this medical research type training would find destiny to a dinner table as a meal. University, National and International laboratory Animal humane care regulations requires the pigs be euthenized without awakening from anesthesia afterwards.
  6. What happens to the pigs afterwards and can the meat be eaten? The pig carcasses are incinerated. We use very large doses of barbiturate and some other steps, to humanely kill the pigs, that make the meat inedible as it would be lethal to the consumer.
  7. Can the pigs transmit disease to the trainees? In theory any animal has the potential to transit rare disease to humans, but the commercial pork-industry pigs we use are exceptionally safe. Students are encouraged to use the protective clothing provided despite the high level of safety. Washing hands afterwards is also encouraged.