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Hands-on training in point-of-care ultrasound (POC-US) should ideally comprise bedside teaching, as well as simulated clinical scenarios. High-fidelity phantoms and portable ultrasound simulation systems are commercially available, however, at considerable costs. This limits their suitability for medical schools. A Linux-based software for Emergency Department Ultrasound Simulation (edus2TM) was developed by Kulyk and Olszynski in 2011. Its feasibility for POC-US education has been well-documented, and shows good acceptance. An important limitation to an even more widespread use of edus2, however, may be due to the need for a virtual machine for WINDOWS® systems. Our aim was to adapt the original software toward an HTML-based solution, thus making it affordable and applicable in any simulation setting.
We created an HTML browser-based ultrasound simulation application, which reads the input of different sensors, triggering an ultrasound video to be displayed on a respective device. RFID tags, NFC tags, and QR Codes™ have been integrated into training phantoms or were attached to standardized patients. The RFID antenna was hidden in a mock ultrasound probe. The application is independent from the respective device.
Our application was used successfully with different trigger/scanner combinations and mounted readily into simulated training scenarios. The application runs independently from operating systems or electronic devices.
This low-cost, browser-based ultrasound simulator is easy-to-build, very adaptive, and independent from operating systems. It has the potential to facilitate POC-US training throughout the world, especially in resource-limited areas.