Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Ultrasound training should be implemented early into medical education programs

Date:
January 23, 2014
Source:
World Heart Federation
Summary:
A new paper advocates including ultrasound in medical education programs to realize the full benefits of the technology as early as possible.

A paper in this month's edition of Global Heart (the journal of the World Heart Federation advocates including ultrasound in medical education programmes to realise the full benefits of the technology as early as possible. The review is by J. Christian Fox, Professor of Clinical Emergency Medicine and Director of Instructional Ultrasound at the University of California Irvine School of Medicine, CA, USA, and colleagues.

Ultrasound technology has advanced to the point that many point-of-care examinations can be carried out using ultrasound, including the advent of hand-held devices similar in size to smartphones. "Emergency physicians, intensivists, and other acute care clinicians are using and relying on critical care ultrasound imaging to better triage and diagnose patients at the point of care. As this new frontier of medicine continues to forge forward using this new and improving technology, we strongly believe in integrating ultrasound training earlier into the medical education curriculum," say the authors.

They outline a number of medical scenarios such as patients with chest pain, shortness of breath, and shock, and detail how ultrasound can be much more accurate in helping healthcare workers diagnosing problems in these circumstances. However, they also caution about the limitations of ultrasound, saying that "it is sometimes difficult to determine the difference between acute versus chronic problems in an individual. This can be a confounding finding in an acute setting, in the event that a physician needs to make a treatment decision that could be attributed more to a chronic diagnosis."

However, overall they point to findings that show "Not only is ultrasound more comprehensive and accurate than physical examination, but it also helps with earlier detection of potentially life-threatening conditions, such as cardiac tamponade* and confirmation of pulseless electrical activity... it is argued that point-of-care ultrasound should be, rather than optional, an essential part of any examination to help physicians develop and narrow down their differential diagnosis."

The authors also refer to a study by Kobal et al demonstrating the potential in extending ultrasound education into the medical school curriculum. Their study compared the physical exam (using non-ultrasound devices such as stethoscopes) done by trained cardiologists to the diagnostic accuracy of ultrasounds done by medical students. This study concluded that not only were students capable of capturing images of cardiac pathology on patients, but their diagnostic skills were far superior in detecting valvular disease, left ventricular hypertrophy, and cardiac dysfunction than those of trained cardiologists performing physical exams.

The authors conclude: "It is becoming increasingly apparent that training our medical students to use ultrasound earlier in their careers can allow them to develop diagnostic skills that far exceed the traditional exam that physicians have been taught for centuries. Thus, it is impossible to ignore the impact ultrasound has made within medical education. Ultrasound has played an essential role in point-of-care cardiac diagnostics, and implementing ultrasound training into medical education is the next logical step to enable the progression of point-of-care ultrasonography."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by World Heart Federation. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. J. Christian Fox, Heather Marino, Chanel Fischetti. Differential Diagnosis of Cardiovascular Symptoms. Global Heart, 2013; 8 (4): 289 DOI: 10.1016/j.gheart.2013.11.007

Cite This Page:

World Heart Federation. "Ultrasound training should be implemented early into medical education programs." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 January 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140123222055.htm>.
World Heart Federation. (2014, January 23). Ultrasound training should be implemented early into medical education programs. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140123222055.htm
World Heart Federation. "Ultrasound training should be implemented early into medical education programs." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140123222055.htm (accessed September 23, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola Costs Keep Mounting

Ebola Costs Keep Mounting

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 23, 2014) The WHO has warned up to 20,000 people could be infected with Ebola over the next few weeks. As Sonia Legg reports, the implications for the West African countries suffering from the disease are huge. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Cases Could Reach 1.4 Million Within 4 Months

Ebola Cases Could Reach 1.4 Million Within 4 Months

Newsy (Sep. 23, 2014) Health officials warn that without further intervention, the number of Ebola cases in Liberia and Sierra Leone could reach 1.4 million by January. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO: Ebola Cases to Triple in Weeks Without Drastic Action

WHO: Ebola Cases to Triple in Weeks Without Drastic Action

AFP (Sep. 23, 2014) The number of Ebola infections will triple to 20,000 by November, soaring by thousands every week if efforts to stop the outbreak are not stepped up radically, the WHO warned in a study on Tuesday. Duration: 01:01 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
5 Ways Men Can Prevent Most Heart Attacks

5 Ways Men Can Prevent Most Heart Attacks

Newsy (Sep. 23, 2014) No surprise here: A recent study says men can reduce their risk of heart attack by maintaining a healthy lifestyle, which includes daily exercise. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins