Autonomic Nervous System Challenge

About this Project

This project evolved from the Autonomic Nervous System Simulator, and was designed with the help of Hany Ibrahim, Farid Khalafalla, Kevin Steed, Jody Takemoto and Thayer Merritt. It involves more gamification, involving sick patients that need medication. Time is counting down as the patients' health decreases.

There are three different rooms in the Autonomic Nervous System Challenge. There is a tutorial that walks players through the actions required to interact with the game. Once players complete the tutorial, they may try the training or game levels. Training levels align with physiology concepts. Players can use acetylcholine, epinephrine and norepinephrine to reverse various autonomic imbalances. The scenarios are randomly generated, so each time players practice they will be challenged with something different.

The game levels are accessed when players choose to see patients. These levels are more challenging than the training levels. Players enter these levels to find sick patients with decreasing health. They must select the correct drugs to treat the patient. To complete these challenges, players must have progressively more knowledge and understanding about autonomic pharmacology.

There are three levels of difficulty for the levels. Beginner levels allow players to add drugs to specific receptors on specific organs, giving them lots of control. Intermediate levels still involve targeting specific organs, but all receptors in that organ that can respond to a given drug will react. This level tests foundational knowledge of drug action. The intermediate level is somewhat more challenging as players must have knowledge of what receptors drugs will affect and what receptors are located in each organ. Advanced difficulty is much more challenging. Players can not interact with specific organs or specific receptors. This is closer to what would happen when a drug is administered to a patient. A drug may be helpful for the patient's condition, but adverse effects on other organs may also occur.