Editorials · Uncategorized

The Future of Ultrasound in My Mind

I’m off work today hanging out with a cup of coffee trying to solve world problems in my head.  I want to be better at what I do. I want others to be better as well.  I live by the motto of “do more good”.  I’ve been doing ultrasound for 10 years now and I still worry about missing something.  I can’t take the human error factor out of ultrasound.

For the entirety of my career, and well before it, there has been talk about the use of contrast in ultrasound.  I received an article about the GE system of utilizing contrast just last week.   Ten years later the dream is the same but the follow through has yet to trickle down and be widely used.  I think we will see it someday.  It could be another 5 to 10 years.  The trick is that the risk has to outweigh the benefit.

I have also heard 3D volumetrics and reconstruction would be the next  the greatest thing since sliced bread.  I have 3D volumetrics, reconstruction views, panoramic ability and cine on my current machine.  They are all wonderful in their own way but are extremely user dependent.  I use all of these on my machine for different reasons but 2D still rules the ultrasound world with good reason that I will not go into at this point.  It is a bunch of technical stuff relating to physics.

Going back to physics & user dependence, I have often wondered what if we went backwards to the first “ultrasound” images of a man in a tub surrounded by water?  Could we could create a surround image of the muscles in an extremity similar to what MRI does?  I’m certain there is a better way.  I just haven’t quite wrapped my brain around how this would work.  Could we potentially lesson the human error factor?

I will go back to posting on ultrasound anatomy & pathology but I am so excited about the future of ultrasound.  I truly want to be part of it.  In the near future I will post about Down’s Syndrome,  missed products of conception, testicular cancers, and a recanulized umbilical vein.  I will post some new MSK material too when I have time.

In the meantime, “do more good”

Kelly

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3 thoughts on “The Future of Ultrasound in My Mind

  1. hello, I’m an ultrasound student looking for a clinical site. I live in Georgia, and have worked at one of the largest hospital systems for 12 years here, but I can’t complete my clinical there. Do you have any suggestions for me? Any advice would be appreciated.
    thanks
    Erin Roper
    eroper3000@yahoo.com

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    1. Hey Erin! I’m glad you have decided to pursue sonography. Unfortunately, many programs that require you to find your own clinical sites are not accredited. At this point you probably have 2 options. First, you can network like crazy with doctors and sonographers in your area hoping someone will be able to help you find a site where you can get clinical hours. I would definitely approach your school and see where others have been able to do their clinical hours in the past for a lead. Your second option is to transfer to a different program that has clinical sites arranged for their students. I realize this would feel like starting over but it might ultimately be your better option. Make sure you look at ARDMS.org for the requirements to sit for your exams. Ultimately your goal should be to do whatever it takes to get registered so you can be employed in your chosen career. Best wishes!

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  2. There are a lot better fields of endeavor that you can go into that will afford you a better quality of life than ultrasound. Don’t forget, about 80% of available jobs in ultrasound will require you to take mandatory call at night time, after you have already worked a long stress filled day. Being forced to work like this causes many health problems due to a lack of much needed sleep. Also, in today’s ultrasound environment, you are required to do more exams in an allotted amount of time, and you will be expected to write up preliminary reports on each exam you perform, which adds to the amount of time required to complete each study. You will not see ANY other imaging modality tech forced to write down preliminary findings…….NONE. I only have 32 years experience performing diagnostic medical sonography, and I can say without reservation, this is an unrespected, deep end endeavor. Anyone who says otherwise has no true concept what is actually going on in today’s present ultrasound environment. This is just stating the facts, not a rosy, unrealistic picture that people who are stuck in a profession they can’t get out of will condone me for. Point in case. I have a nephew that is 34 years old, he has been an echocardiographer for the last 15 years. I told him 12 years ago, he should consider making plans to do something else, as sonography is not a career that will likely see you in or take you to retirement, unless you are willing to sell your soul and kiss every doctor’s butt that you encounter. This nephew left the sonography field 1.5 years ago, and now is a financial consultant with a wealth management group, and told he he has a lot better quality of life now, actually gets to sleep at night and gets paid better with a lot less stress. The choice is yours, don’t make a mistake that you will regret. Yes, you are correct, I no longer work in the ultrasound field, and enjoy life at it’s fullest now. If I could go back, I would not have wasted one minute training or studying for diagnostic medical sonography, and yes, I came from an accredited school, Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa, California.

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