How to get started for surgeon-performed ultrasound? First of all, realizing the value of surgical ultrasound is fundamental to getting started. Ultrasound is a potentially powerful and versatile tool for the surgeon. Enabling the clinician to “see” in a new dimension and extending the physical examination, ultrasound was referred to as “the modern equivalent of the stethoscope.” With technological advances, ultrasound image quality improves remarkably; ultrasound machines, including handheld devices, are available almost anywhere. Increasing use of ultrasound by surgeons has progressively expanded its utilization to therapeutic applications in a multitude of procedures and specialties. The limitations on surgical ultrasound no longer appears to be technology or local practice patterns, but previous reluctance of the surgical community as a whole to realize its value.
A large part of this phenomenon is most likely related to obstacles in gaining the required experience to make ultrasound a tool which feels easy to use. Early exposure and formal ultrasound experiences during medical school, residency, and fellowship training; educational leadership and course offerings by the American College of Surgeons; utilization of local resources to gain ultrasound experience; and coordination with surgical specialty societies to export ultrasound courses, and set quality standards for ultrasound training and performance, will help widespread adoption of this valuable tool.
In this chapter, the scope of surgical ultrasound, surgeon challenge, ultrasound education including the American College of Surgeons role, specialty society certification guidelines, steps to getting started, documentation, credentialing, and privileges are described. Finally, the most important is surgeons’ recognition and commitment in the use of ultrasound for improvement of surgical patient outcome.
KeywordsContinue Medical Education Breast Ultrasound Ultrasound Application Ultrasound Training Ultrasound Experience
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