DIY Ultrasound Model: Abscess

This page summarizes do-it-yourself (DIY) ultrasound models for abscesses. Read more on the DIY ultrasound model compendium.


Homemade ultrasound phantom for teaching identification of superficial soft tissue abscess​1​

MaterialsGelatin, psyllium fiber, ultrasound gel
Estimated CostNot provided

Summary

This 4-page article discusses the optimal mix of fiber component and gelatin to produce a reliable abscess model. In my personal experience, the model did not produce a convincing abscess.


Ultrasound phantoms made of gelatin covered with hydrocolloid skin dressing​2​

Materials Gelatin, psyllium fiber, hydrocolloid dressing
Estimated CostNot provided

Summary

This article discusses classic gelatin models with a fiber component. The authors propose a novel technique of applying a hydrocolloid dressing to the surface of the model to improve the model’s resilience in the setting of multiple punctures. They discuss a vascular and needle aspiration of an abscess or cyst.


How to make & practice with an ultrasound phantom for IVs, lines, abscess

By Gordon Johnson, YouTube (Published 28 August 2016)
MaterialsTofu, long balloons
Estimated CostNot provided

Summary

This 6-minute tutorial video describes how to create an US-guided IV model with balloons and tofu, a deep vein thrombosis (DVT) model from balloons, a foreign body model out of tofu, and an abscess model of tofu and fiber component.


Versatile, Reusable, and Inexpensive Ultrasound Phantom Procedural Trainers​3​

Materials 4.5-lb block of ballistic gel, latex tubing, 60 mL catheter, hemostats, spine model
Estimated Cost$30-50

Summary

This 11-page article details the use of ballistics gel to create a central line mode, lumbar puncture model, and abscess model.


An Inexpensive and Easy Ultrasound Phantom: A Novel Use for SPAM​4​

MaterialsSPAM meat product
Estimated Cost$5

Summary

This 4-page article details how to use SPAM to create models for abscess identification, central line insertion, and foreign body removal. Authors report the benefits of SPAM, which include no need for refrigeration, low cost (about $3 a block), low time intensity for creation (as compared to gelatin), and no bacteria concerns such as those present with raw meat products.


An Easy-to-Make, Low-Cost Ultrasound Phantom for Simulation Training in Abscess Identification and Aspiration​5​

Materials Gelatin, balloons, olive oil, psyllium, super glue, rubber cement, syringe, large plastic container
Estimated CostNot provided

Summary

This 4-page article discusses using balloons, pudding, olive oil, and gelatin to create realistic looking abscess models. Of all the articles discussed in this section, the images associated with this article appear most convincing.


A New Simulation Model for Skin Abscess Identification and Management​6​

Materials Maple syrup, mayonnaise, balloons, needle driver, chicken breast
Estimated CostNot provided

Summary

This 3-page article discusses using a balloon, filled with mayonnaise and maple syrup, and placing it in a raw chicken breast to simulate a subcutaneous abscess.

Updated April 23, 2019


References

  1. 1.
    Lo M, Ackley S, Solari P. Homemade ultrasound phantom for teaching identification of superficial soft tissue abscess. Emerg Med J. 2012;29(9):738-741. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21946182.
  2. 2.
    Chao S, Chen K, Lin L, Wang T, Chong C. Ultrasound phantoms made of gelatin covered with hydrocolloid skin dressing. J Emerg Med. 2013;45(2):240-243. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23399392.
  3. 3.
    Morrow DS, Cupp JA, Broder JS. Versatile, Reusable, and Inexpensive Ultrasound Phantom Procedural Trainers. Journal of Ultrasound in Medicine. March 2016:831-841. doi:10.7863/ultra.15.04085
  4. 4.
    Nolting L, Hunt P, Cook T, Douglas B. An Inexpensive and Easy Ultrasound Phantom: A Novel Use for SPAM. J Ultrasound Med. 2016;35(4):819-822. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26939600.
  5. 5.
    Wilson J, Ng L, Browne V, Lewiss RE. An Easy-to-Make, Low-Cost Ultrasound Phantom for Simulation Training in Abscess Identification and Aspiration. J Ultrasound Med. March 2017:1241-1244. doi:10.7863/ultra.16.04077
  6. 6.
    Heiner JD. A New Simulation Model for Skin Abscess Identification and Management. Simulation in Healthcare: The Journal of the Society for Simulation in Healthcare. August 2010:238-241. doi:10.1097/sih.0b013e3181d87f0f

Dallas Holladay, DO

Dallas Holladay, DO

Assistant Professor and Clerkship Director
Department of Emergency Medicine
Rush University
Dallas Holladay, DO

@Dallas_Holladay

Assistant US Director at Rush, FOAMed addict and roller derby queen. Views my own.