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    Surgical Cut Suits introduced to Army training tool kits for medics



    Story by Spc. Andrew Baba 

    300th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment

    FORT HUNTER LIGGETT, Calif. – The Army has introduced surgical cut suits to enable doctors, nurses and medics to better simulate battlefield trauma procedures. The Army has been using this training aid for few years, but has never used it in a Warrior Exercise (WAREX). WAREX 91 14-03 is the first time cut suits were used.

    A company called Strategic Operations manufactures the surgical cut suits. Each cut suit weighs about 35 pounds and consists of a vest that is Kevlar-lined, with simulated internal organs found in the chest and abdomen. A cut suit is designed to simulate a variety of different injuries found on the battlefield and can be made to bleed when the surgeon cuts into them.

    In the past, Soldiers in medical units used mannequins for their training exercises. Training scenarios that could not be simulated using mannequins had to be described in the best way possible.

    “In the past, the surgical department didn’t have a way of really training, so in all surgical training exercises every scenario was simulated or described verbally,” said 1st Lt. Bany Zinter of the Medical Readiness and Training Command, San Antonio Texas. “With the cut suit, you could practice anything you would do to a regular patient in surgery,” said Zinter.

    Having the cut suit enables the operating room technicians, nurses and doctors to actually be able to cut the bowel, to suture, to stop the bleeding and to experience most of the surgical procedures.

    “It’s a really nice tool to have to help Soldiers practice how they would better take care of their patients on the battlefield,” Zinter said.

    The introduction of cut suits makes training exercises more convenient because it is now possible to practice as many different injuries as the battlefield may present, said Col. George Newton, a plastic surgeon with the 94th Combat Support Hospital (CSH), Seagoville, Texas. “The first time I saw a cut suit was actually yesterday, and I have been impressed with it.”

    “The convenient thing about the cut suit for both the surgeon as well as the scrub personnel is, you actually can make incisions on it, you can make it bleed, you can make injuries to different organs that need to be repaired,” Newton said. “It is very a helpful tool for battlefield medicine, because it more closely simulates actual battlefield injuries. In this training we were able to use the cut suit to simulate a surgical treatment of liver laceration and a splenectomy.”

    There are other advantages to using cut suits from an investment perspective: they can be reused.

    “The beauty of the cut suit is that they are reusable, and we have been adequately trained on how to use and maintain them,” said Zinter.

    “They are created out of silicon, so any injury made on them can be repaired using matching color silicon. We can put all the internal organs and the skin back together at our work site, and make them ready for use in future training exercises.”



    Date Taken: 07.25.2014
    Date Posted: 07.30.2014 12:26
    Story ID: 137722

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