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Unit information: Applied Medical Nursing and Anaesthesia in 2015/16

Please note: you are viewing unit and programme information for a past academic year. Please see the current academic year for up to date information.

Unit name Applied Medical Nursing and Anaesthesia
Unit code VETS30024
Credit points 20
Level of study H/6
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Dr. Holopherne-Doran
Open unit status Not open

All 1st, 2nd and 3rd year units


All other 4th year units

School/department Bristol Veterinary School
Faculty Faculty of Health Sciences

Description including Unit Aims

This unit is a part of the BSc Honours Programme- Veterinary Nursing and Bioveterinary Science. It expands upon the underpinning knowledge gained within the Anaesthesia and Fluid Therapy and the Medical Nursing, Diagnostics and Therapeutics units in year 2 of the programme and will enable students to investigate in more depth key areas of medical nursing and anaesthesia. They will reflect upon the clinical nursing they have carried out within the 3rd year of the programme, evaluate its effectiveness and formulate care plan strategies based upon clinical practice and theory taught within the unit.


  • To expand the students knowledge and understanding gained at level I of the pathophysiology, diagnosis and management of typical and complicated medical conditions, enabling them to understand the implications of the diseases in relation to effective nursing care of the individual patient.
  • To provide students with a more advanced understanding of anaesthesia to the introductory level in the 2nd year unit.
  • To develop students skills in problem solving

Intended Learning Outcomes

  • Recognise the pathophysiology of typical and complicated medical conditions and provide a clear rationale for the most appropriate nursing and veterinary management of each
  • Plan and execute the nursing requirements of patients with such conditions, including drug, nutritional and fluid management.
  • Describe the mechanisms of action of neuromuscular blocking agents and other muscle relaxants and explain how they affect anaesthesia
  • To demonstate an understanding of is the theory behind artificial ventilation and how this would impact on the animal and the use of ventilators in veterinary anaesthesia, including potential complications
  • To be able to prepare, check and use a wide range of diagnostic and monitoring equipment and appraise the use of this type of equipment in high dependence patients
  • To be able to diagnose and rectify common equipment faults and causes of artefact
  • To interpret abnormalities in blood gases and acid-base disorders, recognize their significance and know how to assist the veterinary surgeon in their treatment.
  • Develop a logical and methodical approach to patient complications, accidents and emergencies, including when to ask for assistance
  • To understand the differences in anaesthesia for complicated cases, including specific monitoring and nursing requirements

Teaching Information

  • Lectures
  • Case Studies
  • Practicals

Assessment Information

The overall pass mark for this unit is 40% Students must obtain a minimum of 40% in each of the following areas:


Unseen written paper (2 hour consisting of 4 x 30 minute essay questions)(50%)
Written assessment (2000 word evidence based review)(50%)

Students who fail to satisfy any of the above criteria will be deemed to have failed the whole Unit.


As above.

Reading and References

Recommended: (Materials needed for a deep and comprehensive understanding of the subject that students should read but perhaps selectively)

  • Veterinary Nursing Medical Textbook , C. Bowden & J. Masters
  • BSAVA Manual of Advanced Veterinary Nursing, Ed: A. Hotston-Moore & G Simpson
  • BSAVA Manual of Canine and Feline Anaesthesia & Analgesia Edited by C. Seymour & T.Duke
  • Anaesthesia for Veterinary Nurses ed: Dr E Welsh
  • Hall, Clarke & Trim – Veterinary Anaesthesia 10th Edition

Further Reading: (Background to a subject or further specialised study that students are encouraged to read)