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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Proactive medicine: The "UCI 30," an ultrasound-based clinical initiative from the University of California, Irvine

  • Author(s): Fox, JC
  • Schlang, JR
  • Maldonado, G
  • Lotfipour, S
  • Clayman, RV
  • et al.

This article discusses the benefits of integrating point-of-care diagnostic ultrasound into the four-year medical school curriculum. Handheld ultrasound devices have been used to teach medical students at the University of California (UC), Irvine, since August 2010, and the article explains how the use of this inexpensive, safe, and noninvasive tool enhances the ability of a physician conducting a standard physical exam to confirm suspected findings and uncover other suspected pathology at a reasonable cost. The authors describe the ultrasound curriculum at UC Irvine and the process of its implementation. In the appendix to the article, the authors describe the specific diagnostic benefits of using a handheld ultrasound device for each element of the Stanford 25 physical exam. Their ultrasound-enhanced approach to the physical exam is referred to as the "UCI 30." They make recommendations for how and when to integrate ultrasound into the physical exam. The article points out that early training of medical students in the use of ultrasound can avoid the diagnostic problems of ultrasound by maximizing students' comfort and ability to obtain accurate ultrasound images for diagnostic and procedural purposes.

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