The sonographic digital portfolio: a longitudinal ultrasound image tracking program

Crit Ultrasound J. 2012 Jul 2;4(1):15. doi: 10.1186/2036-7902-4-15.


Background: Ultrasonography (US) at the medical student level is developing. As clinical skills and simulation centers expand, US equipment miniaturizes, and more students are exposed to ultrasound; a digital portfolio comprised of US images and videos may be useful in demonstrating experience and possibly competency.

Methods: Medical students participated in US curricula consisting of didactics and hands-on training. From 1 July 2006 to 30 June 2008, student images and videos were saved. Total images and videos were evaluated and catalogued.

Results: A total of 10,074 images and 1,227 videos were saved during the 2-year period. For the academic year 2006 to 2007, 159 medical students obtained 3,641 of the images (84.9%) and 270 of the videos (86.0%). First year students obtained 778 images and 20 videos; second year students, 1,174 images and 64 videos; third year students, 211 images and 20 videos; and fourth year students, 1,478 images and 166 videos.For the academic year 2007 to 2008, 222 medical students obtained 4,340 images (75%) and 619 videos (67.8%). First year students obtained 624 images and 109 videos; second year students, 555 images and 81 videos; third year students, 132 images and 14 videos; and fourth year students, 3,029 images and 415 videos.

Conclusions: The ultrasound digital portfolio allows medical students to collate and document their ultrasound experience. Currently, there is no requirement for ultrasound training, documentation of competency, or minimum numbers of US exams for medical education. The ultrasound digital portfolio may be a useful tool in documenting ultrasound proficiency.