EULAR has always had a strong commitment in teaching ultrasound in rheumatology. Over time EULAR has developed a broad educational offering in the field which today includes ultrasound courses, both physical and electronic, a textbook as well as practical skills sessions at EULAR Congress. This contribution complements the standard range of opportunities to teach ultrasound provided by universities, hospitals and other institutions.
EULAR Ultrasound Course – The course takes place annually prior to the annual EULAR congress, in the same city. The aim of this three level course (basic, intermediate, advanced) is to cover the whole spectrum of conditions in which ultrasound could be used in rheumatology practice. The EULAR sonography course consists of a combination of lectures and hands-on-scanning of healthy individuals and patients with different rheumatic diseases, in small groups with experienced tutors. The basic level course aims at teaching sonoanatomy, standardised ultrasound scanning methods according to EULAR guidelines and basic ultrasound pathology as well as giving an overview of the role of ultrasound in rheumatologic clinical practice . The intermediate level course aims at consolidating standardized scanning methods, as well as assessing pathology by ultrasound and knowing its role in different musculoskeletal pathologies. The advanced course focuses on difficult issues within ultrasound and includes time for discussion with expert rheumatologists and radiologists in the field.
EULAR Ultrasound Trainer Course – The course takes place prior to the EULAR Ultrasound Course and the annual EULAR Congress. The course is mainly addressing rheumatologists who are planning to organize an EULAR Endorsed Ultrasound Course and aims at improving teaching skills for both lectures and hands-on ultrasound workshops. Participants also learn how to organize an ultrasound course and evaluate the skills of sonographers.
EULAR On-line Introductory Ultrasound Course – This on-line course offers seven modules of theoretical basic skills on ultrasound showing different joint sites, in healthy subjects and in rheumatic diseases, using a wide variety of images and video clips. Each module consists of a main review text with video clips and/or photos, two in-depth discussions expanding on clinical problems and two interactive clinical cases with questions and answers. In addition, assessment questions are presented at the end of each module. The course starts each September and is designed for seven months. Participants finish with an on-line exam and, upon passing, receive a EULAR certificate. Knowledge and skills are targeted at the level felt to be appropriate for European rheumatologists who would like to acquire a basic theoretical knowledge on ultrasound. Participants may later elect to continue with the training program by attending EULAR sonography courses and/or ultrasound courses with EULAR endorsement.
Ultrasound Courses with EULAR Scientific Endorsement – In addition to its own branded educational course programme, EULAR invites other ultrasound courses to apply for “EULAR scientific endorsement” according to predefined rules related to the quality of the content, the qualifications of the faculty and the rigor of the course evaluation. To this end, EULAR views scientific endorsement as an opportunity to positively influence the quality of ultrasound training in rheumatology.
EULAR Book on Ultrasound in Rheumatology – Essential Applications of Musculoskeletal Ultrasound in Rheumatology assists the readers in most effectively using musculoskeletal ultrasound to diagnose and monitor the progression of rheumatoid arthritis, vasculitis, and other rheumatic and soft tissue disorders.
Ultrasound Practical Skills Sessions at EULAR Congress – Ultrasound basic and advanced practical skills sessions are usually included in the scientific programme of the annual EULAR Congress. They consist of a combination of brief lectures and hands-on-scanning of patients with rheumatic diseases and aim at teaching participants how to use ultrasound in clinical practice.
Naredo E, Bijlsma JW, Conaghan PG et al Recommendations for the content and conduct of European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) musculoskeletal ultrasound courses. Ann Rheum Dis 2008;67:1017-22.
Disclosure of Interest None declared
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