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MS3 Phase 2 Rotation

The MS3 Phase 2 Rotation at the Department of Anesthesiology and Critical Care at The University of New Mexico School of Medicine is a mandatory one-week rotation in anesthesia for third-year students. The course is designed to introduce the student to basic concepts in applied pharmacology, pharmacokinetics, IV placement and airway management. These skills are crucial not only for the anesthesiologist but also for physicians in other specialties and family practice. 

Crucial Skills

Didactic: Basic principles of pharmacology are reviewed. The student learns about two representative drugs from the following drug classes:

  • Induction agents
  • Opioids
  • Muscle relaxants

They also learn about rapid sequence induction (RSI) in patients requiring endotracheal intubation who may have a full stomach, and they receive basic instruction on sedation and analgesia. By the end of the course, the students know the basic drug dosing guidelines, how to titrate drugs based on the patient’s pathophysiology and common organ system effects as well as side effects.

Practicum: The students spend several sessions with the passive mannequins learning proper placement of intravenous lines and the essentials of advanced airway management. They perform those same skills on patients for two days in the operating room. The students are expected to insert a laryngeal mask airway, demonstrate effective bag-mask ventilation on an anesthetized patient and start two IVs. They are encouraged to perform endotracheal intubation, if possible.

Simulator: The students spend one afternoon in the high-fidelity human simulator lab working on the skills developed in other parts of the course. This is an opportunity to gain experience in applied pharmacology as well as additional experience in airway management in the context of patient scenarios.

Pain: The students participate in an interactive teaching session focusing on acute and chronic pain management. A manual containing expected reading assignments is supplied. Students take a test at the beginning of the course and again at the end. The course is pass/fail. To pass the course, the student must show up for all parts of the course, spend an afternoon in the simulator and complete the skills in the OR. This course is designed to teach advanced skills in a fun and safe environment.

For more information, contact Pramod Panikkath at