Ultrasound Use Advances Sports Medicine

Greater Knowledge, Image Quality and Portability in Ultrasound Use Advances Sports Medicine

By Philip Salko, MD

Sean T. Bryan, MD, who currently serves on the board of directors for the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine (AMSSM), attended the 2012 Ultrasound First Forum Meeting hosted by the American Institute of Ultrasound Medicine (AIUM) in New York City on November 11, 2012. He is currently the outgoing program director of the University of South Florida-Morton Plant Mease family medicine residency and primary care sports medicine fellowship programs in Clearwater, Fl.

As technology permeates deeper into every facet of medicine, it has been important each step of the way to discuss how best to implement and educate in both direct patient care and in medical education. The ultrasound has classically been underutilized in many parts of medicine but with numerous recent advances in knowledge, image quality and portability it has exploded onto the medical scene, especially in sports medicine. The American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS) already offers the option to pursue the Registered in Musculoskeletal™ (RMSK™) sonography credential to those who practice musculoskeletal ultrasound, including but not limited to: sonographers, physical medicine & rehabilitation physicians, primary care sports medicine physicians, radiologists, chiropractors, rheumatologists, podiatrists and orthopedic surgeons. The AIUM’s approach to insuring quality and safety takes a different focus, offering medical practices the option of pursuing accreditation in musculoskeletal ultrasound.

AIUM organized the Ultrasound First Forum “to promote the concept of performing ultrasound as the first line diagnostic imaging test when medically indicated and there is adequate evidence demonstrating good sensitivity, specificity and accuracy with potential safety advantages and at lower cost for patients.”

Dr. Bryan was proud to represent the AMSSM amongst a large panel of experts from around the country to discuss different aspects of evidence-based information regarding ultrasound use. From doctors, to industry representatives to insurance payers, many parties that concern patient care were in attendance. Another important question was, when advances in technology occur, do they make sense to implement? Through their participation, Dr. Bryan and AMSSM Executive Director Jim Griffith were able to get the AMSSM involved and provide specific input about this question as well as many others from a primary care sports medicine perspective amongst a host of medical specialties ranging from obstetrics/gynecology to radiology.

“Now more than ever, it makes sense for all key stakeholders in US healthcare to be looking for ways to insure quality and safety while keeping costs down” said Dr. Bryan, who was able to make key contacts for the AMSSM for possible collaboration in curriculum development and research to achieve these very goals.

One of the keynote speakers during the AIUM Ultrasound First Forum was Dr. Richard A. Hoppmann, Dean of the University of South Carolina School of Medicine-Columbia. Dean Hoppmann described the impressive longitudinal four-year ultrasound curriculum that has been implemented at his medical school based on his vision that “point of care ultrasound will become the stethoscope of the future.”

Dr. Bryan will be moving to Greenville, South Carolina, to serve as the Chair of the Department of Family Medicine at Greenville Health System/University of South Carolina School of Medicine-Greenville. He is expected to begin his new role in April and said he is “excited to work on implementing innovative curricula to include ultrasound training spanning all four years of medical school, family medicine residency and primary care sports medicine fellowship education.”

The American Medical Society for Sports Medicine (AMSSM) is a multi-disciplinary organization of sports medicine physicians whose members are dedicated to education, research, advocacy and the care of athletes of all ages. Founded in 1991, the AMSSM is now comprised of more than 2,200 sports medicine physicians whose goal is to provide a link between the rapidly expanding core of knowledge related to sports medicine and its application to patients in a clinical setting. Visit to learn more.

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