Editorial

“On the other hand …”: The evidence does not support the use of hand‐carried ultrasound by hospitalists

Abstract

Abstract

In the right hands, ultrasound is a safe and helpful diagnostic imaging tool. However, evidence supporting the use of hand‐carried ultrasound (HCU) by hospitalist physicians has not kept pace with expanding application of these devices. In spite of its strategic point‐of‐care benefit, use of this technology by hospitalists may not ultimately translate into improved efficiency and better clinical outcomes. Optimal levels of training in image acquisition and interpretation remain to be established. Novelty, availability, and the results of a few small studies lacking patient‐centered outcomes remain insufficient grounds to justify the expanded clinical utilization of these medical imaging devices by nonspecialists. Journal of Hospital Medicine 2010;5:168–171. © 2010 Society of Hospital Medicine.