Ultrasound: Indications for Ultrasound

Author: John P Sloan / Editor: John P Sloan / Reviewer: Martin Dore, Raja Shahid Ali / Codes: R1, T1 / Published: 21/01/2021


Emergency medicine ultrasound (EMUS) has been steadily developing over the last two decades, and courses have run in the UK since the late 1990s. Since ultrasound is rapid and involves no radiation, it is an excellent clinical tool, often referred to as the modern stethoscope. Before learning any practical skills it is important to understand the principles in applying EMUS to clinical practice, and to appreciate the key governance issues in training and use. This session will cover these introductory issues, and lead to an appreciation of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine’s (RCEM) learning approach. This session should be undertaken as the first ultrasound session. 

The Royal College of Emergency Medicine (RCEM) has endorsed the inclusion of EMUS in specialist training, and it now appears in the curriculum [3].

After completing this session you will be able to:

  • Define the skills needed for core emergency medicine ultrasound practice
  • Describe the process for training and assessment recommended by the Royal College of Emergency Medicine
  • Appreciate the situations in which emergency medicine ultrasound is appropriate
  • Outline the issues associated with consent and expectation
  • Identify the need for additional, or alternative imaging


  1. The Royal College of Radiologists, Ultrasound training recommendations for medical and surgical specialties, Third edition 2017. BFCR(17)3
  2. National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), Guidance on the use of ultrasound locating devices for placing central venous catheters: Technology appraisal guidance [TA49]. 2002
  3. The Royal College of Emergency Medicine. Ultrasound Training

Comments are closed