Anesthesiology (Minnesota)


Students observe and participate in all aspects of anesthesia practice at Mayo Clinic's hospitals under the supervision of a consultant in the Department of Anesthesiology. Students learn basic techniques for airway management, vascular access and the monitoring of anesthetized patients. They also are exposed to specific anesthetic procedures such as regional techniques (spinals, epidural and axillary blocks), central venous and arterial access, and invasive monitoring.

Specific goals

  1. Observe and participate in all aspects of anesthesiology, including preoperative assessment, administration of anesthesia, intraoperative management and postoperative care.
  2. Understand the basic principles of airway management, advantages and disadvantages of regional versus general anesthesia, intraoperative monitoring techniques, preoperative anesthetic concerns for surgical patients with coexisting diseases, risks of local anesthesia and sedation, contraindications for anesthetic techniques and common complications of anesthesia management.
  3. Understand the basic pharmacological and physiological phenomena of the perioperative period.
  4. Develop an awareness of the breadth and depth of the practice of anesthesiology.

Activity outline

Students rotate through different anesthetic subspecialties and work with both consultants and residents in anesthesia for the rotation. In addition, students typically spend one day in the preoperative clinic, and two days on the inpatient pain service. Students assist consultants in preoperative assessment, the administration of anesthesia, intraoperative management and the postoperative care of surgical patients. They also attend daily teaching conferences and weekly departmental meetings and participate as appropriate.

Copies of Basics of Anesthesia 5th ed, by Stoelting and Miller, are made available to students, who should be familiar with it by the end of the rotation.

Method of evaluation

Students receive a reading syllabus based on Basics of Anesthesia and are administered a written test based on this reading at the end of the rotation. Additionally, evaluation of performance is based on demonstration of familiarity with these reading assignments and clinical efforts by individual consultants. Although anesthesia encompasses many technical skills, the level of competence in these skills is of minor significance in student evaluations.