Implementing ultrasound sessions to highlight living anatomy for large medical student cohorts

Sarah Allsop*, Sanjay Gandhi, Nicholas Ridley, Michelle Spear

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)
134 Downloads (Pure)


Background: There is an intrinsic link between radiology and anatomy and the importance of being able to convert knowledge from 3D structure to 2D image, and vice versa. Medical students must learn how to use anatomical knowledge to interpret radiological images, and with the increasing use of point-of-care ultrasound in clinical practice, the ability to interpret ultrasound scans is becoming more of a core skill for graduating doctors. Rationale: Several recent systematic reviews of the literature have been undertaken showing the benefits of incorporating ultrasound in anatomy teaching, including appreciation of the dynamic nature of living anatomy, better understanding of anatomical structure, and improved motivation to study. However, there is a lack of consensus in the way ultrasound teaching should be incorporated into undergraduate medical anatomy. Approach: This article reflects on a pilot of integrating ultrasound into the medical undergraduate anatomy teaching in the School of Anatomy at the University of Bristol. It shares the experience and how some of the challenges cited in the literature have been approached. Recommendation: To help others negotiate the challenges of implementing this valuable teaching experience, a ‘Six Step Model’ for developing a live ultrasound pilot for undergraduate medical anatomy is offered: Expertise, Education, Ethics, Environment, Equipment, Enlist.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100088
Number of pages7
JournalTranslational Research in Anatomy
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was funded by the University of Bristol . This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 The Authors


  • Anatomy
  • Curriculum development
  • Medical students
  • Radiology
  • Ultrasound
  • Undergraduate medical education


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