Critical care ultrasound has shifted the paradigm of thoracic imaging by enabling the treating physician to acquire and interpret images essential for clinical decision-making, at the bedside, in real-time. Once considered impossible, lung ultrasound based on interpretation of artifacts along with true images, has gained momentum during the last decade, as an integral part of rapid evaluation algorithms for acute respiratory failure, shock and cardiac arrest. Procedural ultrasound image guidance is a standard of care for both common bedside procedures, and advanced procedures within interventional pulmonologist’s (IP’s) scope of practice. From IP’s perspective, the lung, pleural, and chest wall ultrasound expertise is a prerequisite for mastery in pleural drainage techniques and transthoracic biopsies. Another ultrasound application of interest to the IP in the intensive care unit (ICU) setting is during percutaneous dilatational tracheostomy (PDT). As ICU demographics shift towards older and sicker patients, the indications for closed pleural drainage procedures, bedside transthoracic biopsies, and percutaneous dilatational tracheostomies have dramatically increased. Although ultrasound expertise is considered an essential IP operator skill there is no validated curriculum developed to address this component. Further, there is a need for developing an educational tool that matches up with the curriculum and could be integrated real-time with ultrasound-guided procedures.
2021 Journal of Thoracic Disease. All rights reserved.