Strong MHB presence at ultrasound conference in Leipzig
Neuruppin, 21 October 2019
Leipzig hosted this year’s trilateral meeting of the German, Swiss and Austrian societies for ultrasound in medicine (DEGUM, SGUM and ÖGUM) from October 16 to 19. The MHB was represented by Dieter Nürnberg (senior professor of gastroenterology and head of the BIKUS), Hendra Lo (research assistant in the point-of-care ultrasound project PoCUS and medical director of the MHB SkillsLab), and the ultrasound tutors of the Brandenburg Medical School MHB.
For the ultrasound tutors this was the second congress attendance this year, after David Boten and Vroni Walther visited the Euroson congress in Granada/Spain. Prof. Dieter Nürnberg came to Leipzig accompanied by Hendra Lo and eleven tutors from the MHB ultrasound SkillsLab. He welcomed this renewed opportunity for tutors to gain valuable insights in ultrasound diagnostics via workshops and lectures, and also the notable interest of MHB students in the discipline. The focus of this year’s meeting was on advanced training in theory and practice as well as the translation of latest research findings into practical applications.
National and international experts of renown had come to Leipzig to give workshops and lectures on prospective applications of ultrasound. Seminars and refresher courses on current topics such as AI, molecular imaging, therapeutic applications of contrast agents and latest appliance developments provided interesting views into the future of ultrasound. Lively debates addressed political aspects such as the consequences of economization in medicine. Live broadcasts demonstrating professional work in the field completed the comprehensive programme which was also geared to the particular interests and needs of students.
MHB student Gregor Barth was satisfied to note that thanks to efforts on the part of the DEGUM student team the importance of sonography in the medical curriculum is increasingly recognized, and that a two-day programme specifically for students formed part of the Leipzig conference. The student team, so Barth, promotes ultrasound instruction at German medical schools and networking between students with an interest in the discipline, for the mutual benefit of all involved. He expected additional motivation and input for the ultrasound SkillsLab at the MHB.
In collaboration with Maria Heni (Leipzig) and Wiebke Paul (Tübingen), Barth initiated hands-on training units for students on site. Sonography tutors from MHB and other German universities supported by ultrasound experts offered tutorials to other medical students; the sessions offered training in practical ultrasound skills in various fields, e.g. ENT and emergency echocardiography.
In addition Gregor Barth and Florian Recker (Bonn) organised a “sono battle”, a contest aimed to playfully expand skills and practical experience with sonography interpretation in competition with other ultrasound fans.
Three MHB students presented research results at the poster session, with Prof Nürnberg and Hendra Lo as mentors. Together with Sylvia Vogel (MHB evaluation expert) Barth drew up a questionnaire with 17 items to explore the demand for curricular ultrasound instruction and sent it to student committees and ultrasound initiatives at medical schools in Germany. The response identified a strong interest in ultrasound instruction as part of the medical curriculum, so Barth, who hopes to boost pertinent training as an integral part of education at German medical schools.
6th-semester medical student Vroni Walther presented results from cost analyses of ultrasound examination at a communal hospital. In conclusion, Prof. Nürnberg and Hendra Lo together with medical student David Boten (also 6th semester) presented findings from a feasibility study into point-of-care ultrasound, i.e. mobile ultrasound application for house visits in rural areas; the study receives funding from two different research programmes.
The MHB tutors and the BIKUS (Brandenburg Institute of Clinical Ultrasound) will host the next national meeting of sonography tutors in Warnemünde from 5 to 7 July 2020. The 2020 trilateral meeting is scheduled to take place in Salzburg (Austria).