Peer-teaching cardiac ultrasound among medical students: A real option

Alon Ben-Sasson, Yotam Lior, Jonathan Krispel, Moshe Rucham, Noah Liel-Cohen, Lior Fuchs, Sergio L. Kobal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

Introduction Teaching cardiac ultrasound (CU) image acquisition requires hands-on practice under qualified instructors supervision. We assessed the efficacy of teaching medical students by their previously trained classmates (teaching assistants [TAs]) compared to teaching by expert trainers (cardiologists or diagnostic medical sonographers. Methods Sixty-six students received 8-hour CU training: 4-hour lectures on ultrasound anatomy and imaging techniques of 6 main CU views (parasternal long [PLAV] and short axis [PSAV]; apical 4-chamber [4ch], 2-chamber [2ch], and 3-chamber [3ch]; and sub costal [SC]) followed by 4 hours of hands-on exercise in groups of 5 students under direct supervision of a TA (group A: 44 students) or a qualified trainer (group B: 22 students). Students’ proficiency was evaluated on a 6-minute test in which they were required to demonstrate 32 predetermined anatomic landmarks spread across the 6 views and ranked on a 0–100 scale according to a predetermined key. Results The 6-minute test final grade displayed superiority of group A over group B (54±17 vs. 39 ±21, respectively [p = 0.001]). This trend was continuous across all 6 main views: PLAV (69 ±18 vs. 54±23, respectively), PSAV (65±33 vs. 41±32, respectively), 4ch (57±19 vs. 43±26, respectively), 2ch (37±29 vs. 33±27, respectively), 3ch (48±23 vs. 35±25, respectively), and SC (36±27 vs. 24±28, respectively). Conclusions Teaching medical students CU imaging acquisition by qualified classmates is feasible. Moreover, students instructors were superior to senior instructors when comparing their students’ capabilities in a practical test. Replacing experienced instructors with TAs could help medical schools teach ultrasound techniques with minimal dependence on highly qualified trainers.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0212794
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume14
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

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