Play dough as an educational tool for visualization of complicated cerebral aneurysm anatomy

Behzad Eftekhar, Mohammad Ghodsi, Ebrahim Ketabchi, Arman Rakan Ghazvini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


BACKGROUND: Imagination of the three-dimensional (3D) structure of cerebral vascular lesions using two-dimensional (2D) angiograms is one of the skills that neurosurgical residents should achieve during their training. Although ongoing progress in computer software and digital imaging systems has facilitated viewing and interpretation of cerebral angiograms enormously, these facilities are not always available.

METHODS: We have presented the use of play dough as an adjunct to the teaching armamentarium for training in visualization of cerebral aneurysms in some cases.

RESULTS: The advantages of play dough are low cost, availability and simplicity of use, being more efficient and realistic in training the less experienced resident in comparison with the simple drawings and even angiographic views from different angles without the need for computers and similar equipment. The disadvantages include the psychological resistance of residents to the use of something in surgical training that usually is considered to be a toy, and not being as clean as drawings or computerized images.

CONCLUSION: Although technology and computerized software using the patients' own imaging data seems likely to become more advanced in the future, use of play dough in some complicated cerebral aneurysm cases may be helpful in 3D reconstruction of the real situation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-4
Number of pages4
JournalBMC Medical Education
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - 10 May 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Attitude of Health Personnel
  • Cerebral Angiography
  • Cerebral Veins
  • Humans
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional
  • Internship and Residency
  • Intracranial Aneurysm
  • Models, Anatomic
  • Neurosurgery
  • Neurosurgical Procedures
  • Play and Playthings
  • Teaching Materials
  • Vascular Surgical Procedures
  • Journal Article


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