Page last updated at 16:25 GMT, Friday, 18 July 2008 17:25 UK

Vomiting dummy for medic training

The model can simulate a bowel protruding from the stomach

A dummy that moves and feels like a real patient and can bleed, vomit and sweat has been unveiled as the latest training tool for health professionals.

The remote-controlled mannequin, called iStan, has been acquired by the University of Portsmouth.

The 40,000 model is set to help provide realistic training for doctors, nurses and dentists.

It has been designed to replicate a human's anatomical structure, from the skeleton to the eyes.

iStan has pupils which can dilate and contract, its skin can have goosebumps and sweat and it can suffer a heart attack.

Its blood pressure can also fall, internal organs bleed, lungs collapse and its bowels make realistic sounds.

The model can also help doctors dealing with stab victims by simulating a bowel protruding from the stomach.

Professor Lesley-Jane Eales-Reynolds, said: "He can be used in real-world situations.

"For paramedic students he can be put in a crashed car or collapsed at the foot of some stairs, which is precisely the sort of situation they are likely to encounter in the real world.

iStan's pupils can dilate and contract

"He can have a cardiac arrest or an adverse drug reaction in a dental chair, allowing staff and students in dentistry to practise skills that they could not keep honed using their patients."

Phil Ashwell, a healthcare professional who teaches at the university, said: "The mannequins suspend disbelief and bring healthcare to life which means the quality of casualty care will improve.

"The students are very lucky to learn in this safe environment. When I was training all we had to practise on was 'Resus Annie', a folded up mannequin in a suitcase.

"Some of the students are a bit wary when they first meet the simulators because they are so realistic.

"But once they have started practising on one they are fine and they learn so much faster and in more depth."

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