Donald School Journal of Ultrasound in Obstetrics and Gynecology

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VOLUME 3 , ISSUE 4 ( October-December, 2009 ) > List of Articles


Using Ultrasound to Teach Female Reproductive Physiology

Herbert F Janssen

Keywords : Ultrasound,teaching,physiology,female reproduction,ovaries,uterus,fetus

Citation Information : Janssen HF. Using Ultrasound to Teach Female Reproductive Physiology. Donald School J Ultrasound Obstet Gynecol 2009; 3 (4):73-76.

DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10009-1041

License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published Online: 01-12-2010

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2009; The Author(s).


Physiology ties together many related disciplines including anatomy, histology, biochemistry, and cell biology. Mastering the concepts of physiology is essential to understanding the principles of medicine. Learning physiology requires acquisition of facts, but this alone provides little in the way of useful knowledge. Currently, educators are challenged with the task of presenting physiology in a manner that encourages students to actively learn the required material. Didactic lectures were considered antiquated a century ago by Abraham Flexner when he reported on the status of medical education in the United States and Canada. Unfortunately, his comments did little to dissuade the use of lecture as a primary teaching method in medical education. Today we have the opportunity to develop new methods to present material in a manner that encourages active learning and understanding of concepts. Ultrasound imaging is a tool useful in presenting many organ systems in physiology. This is especially true of the female reproductive system. Ultrasound equipment can be used to develop still images of the ovaries, fallopian tubes, uterus, and the developing fetus. It can also provide video clips showing the reproductive organs in juxtaposition with the surrounding tissue or images of the fetus complete with heart sounds and vascular flow. During more advanced training, the students can develop hands-on skills using the ultrasound to identify and evaluate structures.

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