James R. Stallworth, MD, Matthew Garber, MD, Pediatrics, University of South Carolina School of Medicine, Columbia, SC
Introduction: The Department of Pediatrics’ pediatric clerkship has participated in a vertical ultrasound curriculum at the University of South Carolina School of Medicine (USCSOM) which began with the entering class of 2006. During their third-year clerkship, students attend two training sessions where ultrasound basics are reviewed and clinical use of ultrasound is taught and applied to the pediatric patient using the LOGIQe ultrasound obtained as part of an educational grant from General Electric. A review of the literature documents several examples of ultrasound use in medical student education, however there is limited information on its use in pediatrics. Methods: Currently one faculty member handles the education piece of ultrasound in pediatrics. During the two training sessions, the students learn about various pediatric conditions, e.g., volume depletion dextrocardia, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, situs inversus and how to diagnosis/assess them with ultrasound. At the end of the rotation, the students are evaluated by means of an OSCE. The objectives are four-fold: obtain high quality images, appropriately interpret the images, demonstrate appropriate bedside manner, and correctly incorporate image findings into the diagnostic plan. Results: Approximately 75% of the students were able to obtain high quality images, correctly interpret them, and incorporate them into the diagnostic plan. One hundred percent of the students demonstrated appropriate bedside manner. Student satisfaction was also assessed and is positive. Plan: Expansion of this program is planned to include various subspecialists who will attend learning sessions given by the USCSOM Ultrasound Institute. The use of ultrasound and its diagnostic value in medical issues such as subcutaneous abscess versus cellulitis, fatty liver, bladder volume, hydronephrosis, and DVT are planned to be taught. Conclusions: Students at the USCSOM have endorsed ultrasound education as part of the pediatric curriculum, and have demonstrated their ability to obtain, interpret, and incorporate images into their diagnostic plan. Early adopters of this technology often refer to the hand-held ultrasound as an extension of the examiner’s hand which improves physical diagnosis at the bedside. We hope to replicate that experience in pediatrics.