Regional Anesthesia Training System

Project Info

RASimAs Project

Funding Funded by Rasimas project (FP7)

Objective Loco-Regional Anesthesia simulator

Date 01.11.2013 — 31.10.2016

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People Involved

Project Description

Regional Anesthesia Simulator and Assistant (The RASimAs project ) was a European research project with the purpose of gathering European experts from very diverse fields, from computer sciences to anesthesiology, to bring an innovative tool in the hands of the medical doctors to perform safer regional anesthesia for the patient at reduced cost for the society. For that purpose, a virtual reality simulator and assistant were developed, providing an innovative way for medical doctors to train extensively on virtual patients and to be assisted by additional patient-specific information during the procedure.

The project’s goals were to develop two different but complementary end products :

  1. a patient-specific Regional Anaesthesia Simulator (RASim) enhanced with ultrasound guidance
  2. a Regional Anaesthesia Assistant (RAAs), which will assist the physicians during the actual procedures.

The MIMESIS team was a leader of a Work Package in charge of Patient-Specific Virtual Models.

The whole operation of regional anesthesia was simulated into SOFA. The anatomy of the patient (skin, bones, muscles, nerves and vessels) was modelized based on the finite element method. A simulated needle is inserted into the limb being headed for the nerve that have to be blocked. The simulator handles an Ultra-Sound visualisation as well as electrical nerve stimulation.

Expected impact

In many cases, general anesthesia is still favored over RA even when RA should theoretically be the method of choice, despite its documented benefits for patients: lower cardiovascular stress and other complications, reduced postoperative pain, earlier mobility, shorter hospital stay, and ultimately significantly lower costs. The slow adoption of RA is due to the lack of physician training.

Therefore, the key challenge is the training of physicians in order to increase the market adoption of RA procedures. RASimAs is expected to bring significant clinical, economic and scientific impacts. In particular the results of RASimAs will enable to stimulate the replacement of general anesthesia by regional anesthesia in many cases, leading to improved patient care, reduced complications and lower costs.

Controlled clinical trials to evaluate computer-based models and patient-specific approach will demonstrate the benefits of the technology in clinical environment. Advanced research in virtual reality medical simulation as well as real-time assistance based on patient-specific data will accelerate the scientific deployment of such technologies in clinical environment. Finally, by replacing general anesthesia with RA and improving the success rate of RA procedures, significant reduction of costs are expected, estimated at 100,000 Euros by year and operating theater.


Real-time Error Control for Surgical Simulation Huu Phuoc Bui, Satyendra Tomar, Hadrien Courtecuisse, Stéphane Cotin, Stéphane Bordas BIOMECHANICS AND COMPUTER ASSISTED SURGERY MEETS MEDICAL REALITY, Aug 2017, Lille, France. 2017, 

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