Training Guidelines for Physicians Who Evaluate and Interpret Urologic Ultrasound Examinations

Physicians who perform and/or interpret diagnostic genitourinary ultrasound examinations should be licensed medical practitioners who have a thorough understanding of the indications and guidelines for genitourinary ultrasound examinations as well as a familiarity with the basic physical principles and limitations of the technology of ultrasound imaging. They should be familiar with alternative and complementary imaging and diagnostic procedures and should be capable of correlating the results of these other procedures with the ultrasound findings. They should have an understanding of ultrasound technology and instrumentation, ultrasound power output, equipment calibration, and safety. Physicians responsible for diagnostic genitourinary ultrasound examinations should be able to demonstrate familiarity with the anatomic, physiologic, and pathophysiologic characteristics of the anatomic areas that are being examined. They should have successfully completed in-depth training that included documented experiential education in the performance and/or interpretation, documentation, and reporting of diagnostic ultrasound examinations.*
 
Physicians (MD and DO) performing and interpreting ultrasound examinations should meet 1 of the following:
 
1. Completion of an Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education–accredited urology residency and/or fellowship program.
If completion of a urology residency and/or fellowship program occurred more than 36 months ago, 100** diagnostic urologic ultrasound examinations and 10 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ or American Osteopathic Association (AOA) Category 1-A Credits specific to urologic ultrasound should be documented within the last 36 months.
 
or
 
2. Structured training that includes documentation of the following:
a. Involvement with the performance, interpretation, and reporting of at least 100** diagnostic urologic ultrasound examinations within the previous 36 months. Ultrasound examinations should be under the supervision of a qualified physician who meets these training guidelines.
 
b. Completion of 20 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ or AOA Category 1-A Credits credit hours specific to diagnostic urologic ultrasound within the previous 36 months.
 
Maintenance of Competence in Urologic Ultrasound
All physicians performing urologic ultrasound examinations should demonstrate evidence of continuing competence in the interpretation and reporting of those examinations. A minimum of 50 diagnostic genitourinary ultrasound examinations per year are recommended to maintain the physician’s skills. 
 
Continuing Medical Education in Urologic Ultrasound
The physician should complete 10 hours of AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ or AOA Category 1-A Credits specific to urologic ultrasound every 3 years.
 
Developed in collaboration with the following organization: American Urological Association
 
*Please refer to the AIUM Practice Parameter for Documentation of Ultrasound Examinations.
 
**The number of cases selected was decided on in collaboration and chosen as a minimum number needed to gain experience and proficiency with ultrasound imaging as a diagnostic modality. This is necessary to develop technical skills, to appreciate the practical applications of basic physics as it affects image quality and artifact formation, and to acquire an experience base for understanding the range of normal and recognizing deviations from normal.
 
Cases presented as preselected, limited-image sets, such as in lectures, case conferences, and teaching files, are excluded. The ability to analyze a full image set, determining its completeness and the adequacy of image quality, and to perform the diagnostic process, distinguishing normal from abnormal, is considered a primary goal of the training experience.

Approved: 11/02/2013; Reapproved: 10/31/2015, 11/03/2018

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