Standing in front of nearly one hundred peers, faculty and university leaders, Joshua and Vanessa Hamby and Mohit Ajmeri demonstrated the use ultrasound to diagnose muscle tears and strains. The technology, which uses high frequency sound waves to generate a picture of muscles, tendons, nerves and other soft tissue, has become a more popular and cost-effective method of discovering muscle injuries that X-ray machines and MRIs often miss.
The students, who are completing their clinical rotations at Stepping Hill Hospital in the UK, were one of about ten groups—more than 30 students total—to present at AUC’s UK Symposium in September.
“Ultrasound has become more useful in patient diagnosis and we’re happy that we’ve been able to learn this skill and present it at the AUC symposium.” –Vanessa Hamby, clinical student rotating at Stepping Hill Hospital in the UK.
Now it’s in fifth year, the UK Symposium convenes AUC students from the school’s eight affiliated UK clinical sites. Royal Blackburn Hospital, Wexham Park Hospital, Ealing Hospital, St. Richard’s Hospital, Epsom Hospital, Stepping Hill Hospital, Worthing Hospital, and St. Richard’s Hospital—host site of the symposium—all sent students to participate in this year’s event.
Organized by Drs. Stephen Ash, UK Clinical Dean, Ian Scobie, Associate UK Clinical Dean, and Adam Stone, Site Director at Western Sussex Hospital NHS Trust (which includes St. Richard’s Hospital and Worthing Hospital), the three-day symposium served as an opportunity for students to prepare and present patient cases from their various clinical experiences. Groups, and in some cases individuals, spent about 20 minutes describing a challenging patient or scenario and reviewed the steps and processes involved in developing a diagnosis and treatment plan. Cases explored topics like pediatric growth charts, prevalence of childhood rickets disease, head mass, spinal tuberculosis and Pott’s disease, and cavitary lung lesion, among others.
Interspersed throughout the event were lectures from several UK faculty members and consultants. Presentations included research and case studies on issues like renal medicine, pre-eclampsia, fertility management, sickle cell anemia, Addison’s disease, and acute liver failure.
By participating in the symposium, students were able to engage in meaningful discussions about patient diagnosis, pathology, prognosis and clinical associations, while also practicing their speaking and oral presentation skills. And, importantly, they were able to do so in a shared and supportive environment.
During his opening remarks, Dr. Ian Scobie, urged students to continue pursuing research opportunities throughout their clinical education. “When you start at a new site and plan to be there for a reasonable period of time, think about the possibility of making a presentation or participating in research that might get your name on an abstract or publication.”
On the final day, three student groups received awards for their work. Among those recognized were Joshua Hamby, Vanessa Hamby and Mohit Ajmeri for their presentation on diagnostic techniques using ultrasound.