Moulage is originally a French word for moulding but in modern
times has become synonymous with the application of simulated
illnesses or wounds on a manikin in order to better train
healthcare professionals. In medical simulation, moulage,
wardrobe and props are utilized with medical
simulators in-order to provide assessment clues to healthcare
students and professionals
This process of using moulage began around the 19th
century when instructors took moulds of real-life cases to help
demonstrate illnesses or wounds to future medical students. EMS,
fire fighters, the military and other first responders primarily
utilizes trauma moulage while nurses, physicians, surgeons and
other primary care providers primarily utilize medical moulage.
While almost every simulated patient case dealing with trauma
requires moulage, medically simulated representations of internal
illnesses do not always require the use of makeup. Yet simple
moulage techniques such as the application of water to demonstrate
sweating due to fever, or the use of blue watercolors on the
manikin's skin to cue hypotension can be used for even the most
mild of infections. Complicated moulage techniques such as trauma
moulage usually require a great deal of preparation.
By taking the time to include Moulage in your simulation
experiences, learners will be provided the most realistic patient
representation possible. Increased realism tends to improved
learning outcomes, as participants find themselves captivated by
the experience that closely resembles potential clinical realities.
When should you use moulage? Any time you suggest to learners
"Imagine the patient has [condition]", as patients don't arrive in
most clinical environments with a yellow sticky on their leg that
simply says "bleeding here". By showing learners a representation
of the intended "condition", clinical educators better enable self
directed learning during patient assessment and care.
'I cannot commend the clinic enough. It is marvellous we
have this service at all and well done to you all.'
Patient, Coronary Heart Disease / Heart Failure Service, Shotley
Bridge Community Hospital