Microsurgical and Endoscopic Training Model with Nonliving Swine Head: New Alternative for Skull Base Education
The pig model was also used in neuroscience because of the similarities of its brain with human. Some authors have described an in vivo swine model for training neurosurgical residents. The use of animals in teaching and scientific research has been increasingly discouraged worldwide being restricted to specific situations, when there is no alternative model. This paper proposes a practical model of microneurosurgical and endoscopic skull base training using a nonliving porcine head. Fresh porcine heads were obtained from local butchery and were dissected at the Laboratory of Microsurgery. Skull base tasks were trained under microscopic or endoscopic magnification. Several procedures, extensively detailed in a stepwise manner, could be simulated in the nonliving pig model, including transnasal approach, middle fossa dissection, and posterior fossa procedures (e.g., IAC drilling). The pig model perfectly simulates standard microneurosurgical procedures, and proved to be effective for developing and refining surgical skills. In addition, this model contributes to the reduction of live animals use for surgical training.