DIY Ultrasound Model: Procedure – Nerve Blocks

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

A low cost, high fidelity nerve block model​1​

MaterialsPork loin, cat 5 cable, ultrasound gel, IV tubing, hand sanitizer, 10 cc syringe, long kelly clamps
Estimated CostNot provided


The pork loin is preserved by soaking in hand sanitizer for 12 hours. Long kelly clamps are used to puncture the model and pull the cat 5 cable and IV tubing through the pork loin lengthwise. The cat 5 cable and IV tubing are then filled with ultrasound gel and clamped at both free ends. The model is now complete.

It is likely that similar results could be acheived by using a gelatin model to avoid any issues with probe contamination.

How to make a meat model for UGRA

By Cynthia Shum (​​​​​Published on 13 Jun 2015)
[UGRA = Ultrasound Guided Regional Anesthesia]
MaterialsBeef tendon, boneless pork
Estimated CostNot provided


Use forceps to burrow a hole through the boneless pork and insert the beef tendon. The tendon will simulate peripheral nerves when performing the ultrasound. Consider wrapping the meat in a plastic wrap to avoid probe contamination.

A low-fidelity, high functionality, inexpensive ultrasound-guided nerve block model​2​

MaterialsLong balloons, paper straw, dry spaghetti, chicken breasts, syringe, canola oil, 18 gauge needle
Estimated CostNot provided


This model is designed to simulate the femoral nerve-vein-artery bundle. The paper straw should be inserted into one of the balloons to represent a thicker walled artery. Both this balloon and another balloon without a straw (the vein) are filled with water. A third balloon is filled with 5-6 raw spaghetti noodles to simulate the  nerve. The bundle is then placed between two chicken breasts and is ready to use.

To avoid probe contamination with raw meat consider covering the model with plastic wrap.

Updated April 23, 2019


  1. 1.
    Sparks S, Evans D, Byars D. A low cost, high fidelity nerve block model. Crit Ultrasound J. August 2014. doi:10.1186/s13089-014-0012-2
  2. 2.
    Micheller D, Chapman M, Cover M, et al. A low-fidelity, high-functionality, inexpensive ultrasound-guided nerve block model. CJEM. 2017;19(1):58-60.
Dallas Holladay, DO

Dallas Holladay, DO

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


Come for the medical education, stay for the cat memes.