FoCUS to the Rescue!

Introduction to Rescue Ultrasound (20 min)

  • In this brief introduction I’ll discuss basic principles of rescue imaging including the shock-based differential diagnosis approach.  
  • Here you can find my rescue echo cheat sheet.  I keep these attached to my echo machines and review them before finalizing my impression about rescue cases.  Feel free to use and distribute!

Hypovolemia (20 min)

  • Hypovolemia is super common in our patient, it seem frequently when we image unstable patients, and the idea seems simple, right?  Just look for an empty heart…piece of cake.  Careful!  Just because something is simple doesn’t make it easy!  It’s actually very challenging to assess volume status, and I sometimes wonder whether this is even a reasonable target for basic ultrasound.  

Low Afterload (15 min)

  • Another common and important diagnosis.  Yes, I recognize that low preload and low afterload often coexist, and that ultrasound cannot reliably distinguish between them.  But I believe it’s important to recognize the basic patterns of the extremes of low preload and low afterload, which is what we’ll highlight here.

Dynamic LVOT Obstruction (20 min)

  • Dynamic obstruction is a finding that even experts overlook and it’s very difficult for beginners to diagnose and impossible to exclude.  But it is SUCH an important physiology to consider, I just have to keep this section in the line-up!  Every time you do a FOCUS exam, I want you to ask yourself “Could there be dynamic LVOT obstruction?”

Tamponade (20 min)

  • While the diagnosis of tamponade is beyond the scope of basic POCUS, the identification of pericardial effusion is clearly a powerful application of bedside ultrasound.  

LV Failure

RV Failure and Pulmonary Embolism

Valve Disease

Tension Pneumothorax

Arrhythmia and Summary