da Silva CB, Pinto EM. Efficacy validation of a low-cost handmade simulator (SIMCA-COW) in palpation, ultrasonography evaluation, and artificial insemination in cows. Vet World. 2023 Jan;16(1):144-148

PMID: 36855367


Background and aim: Using simulators in high education enables practical training by repetition in circumstances close to reality reducing the stress of both animal and operator. The limited resources of veterinary schools, the increase in the number of students in lecture halls, and the low availability of animals for teaching due to welfare regulations, reduce teaching opportunities with live animals being simulator as the better alternative. This study aimed to assess the efficacy of a low-cost handmade simulator (SIMCA-COW) in eight veterinary students inexperienced in palpation, ultrasonography evaluation, and artificial insemination in cows.

Materials and methods: Two sets of exercises were carried out: structure localization by rectal palpation and ultrasonography were evaluated by the inexpert veterinary students in the SIMCA-COW simulator. Also, evaluated the length of time to insert the insemination catheter through the cervix in the inert simulator during four sessions.

Results: All the students were able to palpate both structures and to locate the body and both uterine horns by ultrasonography. Cervix and follicles were located by 5/8 (62.5%) students and 3/8 (37.5%) students found the corpus luteum by ultrasonography. A reduction in time span between the first and fourth intrauterine insemination attempts was observed (8.26 ± 2.7 vs. 3.69 ± 1.7; mean ± standard error; p < 0.05).

Conclusion: The simulator validated in this study (SIMCA-COW) allows training and learning by repetition, saving the limitations found in live animal practice.