Military family physicians' perceptions of a pocket point-of-care ultrasound device in clinical practice

Mil Med. 2014 Dec;179(12):1474-7. doi: 10.7205/MILMED-D-14-00241.


Point-of-care ultrasonography with a pocket ultrasound device, General Electric Medical Systems Vscan (Milwaukee, Wisconsin), has been shown to be effective and easy to learn. However, no studies to date have evaluated its use in the military primary care setting where its portability and value in bedside diagnosis would be especially beneficial. We tested the feasibility of the Vscan in the day-to-day care of patients by family physicians in their clinic, inpatient wards, and its potential for use in the military-deployed setting. Participants were trained and credentialed in the use of the point-of-care ultrasonography. Then, participants were provided with a pocket ultrasound device to use in their normal day-to-day practice. Additionally, participants completed surveys and provided ratings on their perceptions regarding the use of the device. According to the survey analysis, participants found the devices to be easy to use, valuable in discerning a diagnosis, and were not prohibitively time consuming. Moreover, patients were perceived by the participants to have been satisfied with the use of the device. Overall, participants had high satisfaction with the Vscan and perceived that the device would be highly valuable in the military-deployed setting.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • Family Practice / instrumentation*
  • Humans
  • Military Medicine*
  • Military Personnel / psychology*
  • Physicians, Family
  • Point-of-Care Systems*
  • Ultrasonography / instrumentation*
  • United States