Point-of-Care Ultrasound Education for Pediatric Residents in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit

MedEdPORTAL. 2018 Feb 15;14:10683. doi: 10.15766/mep_2374-8265.10683.


Introduction: Point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) is ultrasound performed by the provider at the patient's bedside to answer a specific clinical question. No guidelines exist for teaching POCUS to pediatric residents, and there are currently no pediatric-specific POCUS resources on MedEdPORTAL. To fill this gap, we designed an educational resource to introduce pediatric residents to POCUS during their pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) rotation.

Methods: Our POCUS curriculum included content on ultrasound basics, lung ultrasound, and focused cardiac ultrasound. Residents completed a precourse knowledge test at the start of the PICU rotation. Self-study modules were provided to the residents for independent review. During small group, residents performed ultrasound scanning on subjects with normal anatomy. Residents also participated in weekly POCUS rounds to perform supervised ultrasound scanning on PICU patients with known abnormal ultrasound findings. After completion of the PICU rotation, residents competed a postcourse knowledge test and survey. Knowledge test scores were compared to a historical cohort of residents who had completed the PICU rotation but not the POCUS curriculum.

Results: Six residents completed the curriculum, and all completed the postcourse knowledge test with significant improvement in test scores compared to a historical cohort. Residents reported increased knowledge of POCUS indications and comfort performing POCUS. All residents rated the small-group sessions and POCUS rounds highly.

Discussion: Pediatric residents have little POCUS training and perform poorly on POCUS knowledge testing. A basic POCUS curriculum can be instituted during the PICU rotation and improve resident knowledge and comfort with POCUS.

Keywords: Pediatrics; Ultrasound.

MeSH terms

  • Curriculum / trends
  • Humans
  • Intensive Care Units, Pediatric / organization & administration
  • Internship and Residency / methods
  • Pediatrics / education*
  • Pediatrics / methods
  • Point-of-Care Systems / standards
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Ultrasonography / methods*