SIUE School of Nursing students use the Anatomage Table under the direction of Dr. Chaya Gopalan (middle) to explore various anatomical structures and their interplay.

EDWARDSVILLE - The Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Nursing’s (SON) new technological centerpiece, an Anatomage Table, is enabling students to explore the human body like never before.

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Students in the nurse anesthesia program are using the life-size, 3D table to virtually dissect and study the human anatomy and structural relationships in ways that were previously inaccessible.

“The Anatomage Table has allowed us to take active learning to a higher level in our classrooms,” said Kevin Stein, DNAP, CRNA, program director and assistant professor in the nurse anesthesia program. “It is revolutionizing the way acute and chronic pain management is being taught.”

The School of Nursing believes it is imperative to continue to utilize highly skilled and cost-effective nurse anesthetists to better improve access to care and create health equity in its communities. Its programs are at the forefront of new pedagogical techniques and technological advancements in education.

The 3D virtual dissection table allows students to experiment and explore the body at every level. Simulated learning experiences abound with the touch of a fingertip.

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“This cutting-edge technology engages students, reinforces knowledge, and offers opportunities to gain a deep understanding of the various anatomical structures and their interplay,” said Chaya Gopalan, PhD, associate professor in the SON and in the School of Education, Health and Human Behavior’s Department of Applied Health.

“This scaffolding becomes the foundational knowledge essential to performing advanced anesthetic techniques, especially those related to the management of acute and chronic pain,” Stein added.

Nurse anesthesia students have been thrilled to interact with the advanced technology and enhance their techniques. Their didactic coursework, paired with rich clinical and simulated experiences are successfully preparing them to perform advanced anesthetic techniques essential to the management of acute postoperative and chronic pain.

“Having this incredible technology literally at our fingertips is exciting,” said Jacob Turner, of Brimfield. “I’m eager to further explore the muscles and nerves, and see how they work together in order to improve my techniques. This new technology will allow us to learn more efficiently and effectively.”

“Other technologies and resources like Ultrasound, Google images and textbooks offer visuals and pieces of information, but this innovative 3D table enhances that by offering angles that have not been otherwise available,” added Greg Feilner, of Crestwood, Mo. “I’m grateful the SIUE School of Nursing is investing in this type of technology, so we will be thoroughly prepared to advance in the clinical setting as nurse anesthetists.”

The SIUE School of Nursing’s programs are committed to creating excellence in nursing leadership through innovative teaching, evidence-based practice, quality research, patient advocacy and community service. Enrolling nearly 1,400 students in its baccalaureate, master’s and doctoral programs, the School develops leaders in pursuit of shaping the nursing profession and impacting the health care environment. SIUE’s undergraduate nursing programs on the Edwardsville campus and the regional campus in Carbondale help to solve the region’s shortage of baccalaureate-prepared nurses and enhance the quality of nursing practice within all patient service venues. The School’s graduate programs prepare nurses for advanced roles in clinical practice, administration and education.

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