Go Beyond the Block: Perioperative Ultrasound Can Help Streamline Patient Care
The role of the anesthesiologist is changing. With hospitals seeking innovative ways to streamline patient care and improve outcomes, anesthesiologists are increasingly expected to provide patient care beyond general anesthesia and nerve blocks. Perioperative Medicine—Pain management and patient care responsibilities—now extend past the operating room and well into recovery. Anesthesiologists are taking on new roles before, during, and after surgery.
Now, anesthesiologists are picking up new skills, like point-of-care perioperative ultrasound, that would have been previously relegated to another specialist. Learning how to scan perioperative patients for complications and conditions is actually a time-saving measure, and can significantly improve patient outcomes and shorten hospital stays.
How can point-of-care ultrasound aid in perioperative medicine?
Point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) is becoming an increasingly essential component of perioperative medicine, specifically patient care. With several applications, such as aiding in local anesthetic placement, and helping determine and prevent post-operative complications, perioperativists will find POCUS to be an invaluable tool in helping provide better patient outcomes.
Common perioperative ultrasound applications include:
- Hemodynamic monitoring & volume status management
- Identification of pericardial effusion or tamponade
- Detection of cardiopulmonary pathology including pneumothorax
- ET Tube Placement/airway management
- Focused Assessment of Transthoracic Echocardiography (FATE exam)
- Assessment of gastric contents
- Evaluation of hemodynamic instability (FAST exam)
- Ultrasound-guided nerve blocks
What ultrasound systems and technologies are best for perioperativists?
The following list of SonoSite ultrasound machines are favored by perioperativists.
SII Ultrasound System Engineered specifically for anesthesiologists and busy operating rooms, the SII can be mounted on a wall, ceiling, or stand for dependable accessibility. Its lean, simplified controls are designed for single-hand operation, and its visualization quality aids imaging confidence.
Edge II Ultrasound System SonoSite's top-of-the-line portable Edge II ultrasound features advanced visualization algorithms, a large display screen, splash-resistant silicone keyboard, and a solid aluminum core.
X-Porte Ultrasound System The SonoSite X-Porte features outstanding image quality, advanced cardiac calculations, and includes educational modules that are built in to the machine, so that you can learn additional ultrasound scans as you work. Durable glass-covered system is outstandingly easy to clean.
iViz Ultrasound System The ultimate in portable ultrasound, the iViz goes with you on rounds and is ready to work at the patient bedside when you need it.