Education & Training : Medical & health

Education & Training Portfolios


ECMO Simulation Device for Hands-On Training and Improved Patient Outcomes

UW–Madison and UW Hospital researchers and clinicians have developed a training device for ECMO procedures that would allow for both cannulation and pulsatile flow hands-on practice. This simulation device is a closed loop system with a large enough fluid capacity to operate actual ECMO systems. Using simulated skin and veins, the clinician can practice feeling for a pulse to locate a vein and then insert the ECMO cannula. The expended simulated tissue and veins are discarded and replaced with new disposable parts. The device can be placed on an actor or integrated into a mannequin to simulate scenarios in the field, hospital or in transit (e.g., ambulance, helicopter).

App for Stratifying Autism Spectrum Disorders

UW–Madison researchers have developed a software test to differentiate ASD participants into two distinct types of contextual learners. The first group resembles a “Typically Developing” (TD) learning profile, and the second group does not modulate with context, indicating that they are not able to learn the embedded context.

Participants viewed a monitor divided into four quadrants and were asked to search for a visual target, then indicate the quadrant in which the target was located. Unbeknownst to the participants, contextual information about the target location was manipulated across sessions by varying the number of off-targets and the probability of the target being present in that quadrant. Search time as a function of the proportion of informative cues in the target quadrant was used as a measure of contextual learning.

Field Portable Smartphone Device for Water Quality Monitoring

A University of Wisconsin-Green Bay professor of chemistry has developed a portable, accurate, low cost, smartphone-based analytical device for the field-measurement and geographical mapping of environmentally relevant water quality parameters. In its current embodiment, the device is a colorimeter for measuring absorbance that includes a visible light source with onboard power, imaging filters, a sample cuvette, and a mounting mechanism for attachment to a smartphone or tablet. An accompanying app is used to record camera images of samples and convert them to numerical absorbance data for analysis. The app will be further developed to allow integration with an online ArcGIS platform for uploading and mapping the data.

Mobile Tools for Autism & Communicative Disorders Therapy

A Researcher at University of Wisconsin Stevens Point has developed a suite of medically secure mobile application tools to instantly communicate, track and analyze behaviors and medical interventions for a variety of communication spectrum disorders, especially focusing on Autism therapies. In addition, this system is designed to increase the ability of organizations to train new therapeutic staff in the field through calculated suggestions from an artificial intelligence engine. The suite of apps consists of 1) a data entry, tracking and analysis tool 2) a video capture, sharing and behavior tagging tool, and 3) an artificial intelligence tool. An online Knowledge Automation Expert System (a type of Artificial Intelligence software) is used to track treatment, look for patterns in said treatment, and provide guidance on the next best steps based on each child’s needs. The applications are media rich and allow parents, therapists, and medical doctors to record, track, and observe actual behavior in real time through interactive charting, video sharing, and video conferencing. The video sharing and conferencing provide a way for therapists in the field to work in real-time with senior therapists remotely, thus increasing the level of training for field staff.

These apps are cross mobile platform compatible (Android, iOS and Blackberry) and have several levels of security ensuring patient record safety. This streamlined system of apps work together to capture all critical data from the medical treatments as well as the behavior therapy treatments and provide analysis tools to track and understand changes in the pattern of behavior and reduce subjective interpretation. The final product simplifies communication among parents, therapists and doctors, as well as providing an easy method for therapeutic organizations to efficiently train their staff in the field through direct access to senior therapists and their experience.

Breast Imaging Training and Testing Simulator

A UW–Madison researcher has developed a simulator that helps radiology residents-in-training learn to interpret breast images (mammographic, ultrasound, etc.), assess their knowledge and compare their performance to experts.

The system is preloaded with medical histories and images from known clinical cases. The trainee is asked to recommend recall instructions. His/her responses are tested against the answers of an expert clinician and pathologic correlation. The program reports any divergence between the two.

The program uses actual clinical data and is designed to provide realistic yet demanding simulation. In addition to recall instructions, a trainee may be asked to complete other tasks, such as locating a suspicious lump or predicting whether a biopsy will be required.

WURSS: An Instrument to Measure the Severity and Duration of the Common Cold

Now, a group of UW-Madison medical researchers has developed an instrument for measuring the severity and functional impact of the common cold. The instrument, called the Wisconsin Upper Respiratory Symptom Survey (WURSS), provides a comprehensive set of questions covering cold symptoms and related quality-of-life outcomes experienced by cold-sufferers.

Long (WURSS-44) and short (WURSS-21) versions are now available. Patients complete the survey -- in either electronic or hard-copy form -- and the results are analyzed statistically.

The original survey was created using previous scales, expert opinion and common knowledge. It was later expanded and refined based on its use in a randomized trial testing the effectiveness of Echinacea as a cold remedy, and through interviews and focus groups with survey participants. The questionnaire measures specific cold symptoms, symptoms clusters (dimensions), functional impact, and global severity.

The WURSS-44 has now undergone formal validity testing. Internal validity is supported by favorable reliability and responsiveness coefficients. External validity is supported by strong associations of WURSS with the SF-8 (a general health instrument) and the Jackson cold scale. Importantly, WURSS is both more comprehensive and more sensitive (better responsiveness) than either comparison instrument. A subset of items have been selected for the short form WURSS-21. More details on validation and item reduction can be obtained from the researchers through the link below.

Video Demonstrating Minimal Incision Aortic Surgery

Dr. Turnipseed of the University of Wisconsin Hospital has now perfected a minimal incision surgical procedure for treating abdominal aortic aneurysm. A video demonstrating this procedure is available for licensing under copyright.

Open-Chested Animal Teaching Video of Myocardial Infarction

Using high-quality videotape, a team of medical researchers, practitioners and educators has developed an interactive CD-ROM showing the effects of arterial blockage in an open-chest, pig model of myocardial infarction and the accompanying changes in the electrocardiogram and blood pressure. The videotape shows an exposed, beating heart in which an attack is induced by placing a clamp on the left-anterior, descending coronary artery, to block blood flow.

The main objectives of the CD-ROM are to demonstrate the physical changes in the heart during myocardial infarction; provide mechanistic explanations for these changes; and illustrate the physiological basis for common therapeutic interventions for heart attacks. The CD also provides animations of common tools and procedures for diagnosis and monitoring; video of surgical procedures both preceding and during open-heart surgery; a glossary of terms; and a comprehensive set of test questions.