Patient Self-Performed Point-of-Care Ultrasound: Using Communication Technologies to Empower Patient Self-Care

Andrew W. Kirkpatrick*, Jessica L. McKee, Kyle Couperus, Christopher J. Colombo

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Point-of-Care ultrasound (POCUS) is an invaluable tool permitting the understanding of critical physiologic and anatomic details wherever and whenever a patient has a medical need. Thus the application of POCUS has dramatically expanded beyond hospitals to become a portable user-friendly technology in a variety of prehospital settings. Traditional thinking holds that a trained user is required to obtain images, greatly handicapping the scale of potential improvements in individual health assessments. However, as the interpretation of ultrasound images can be accomplished remotely by experts, the paradigm wherein experts guide novices to obtain meaningful images that facilitate remote care is being embraced worldwide. The ultimate extension of this concept is for experts to guide patients to image themselves, enabling secondary disease prevention, home-focused care, and self-empowerment of the individual to manage their own health. This paradigm of remotely telementored self-performed ultrasound (RTMSPUS) was first described for supporting health care on the International Space Station. The TeleMentored Ultrasound Supported Medical Interventions (TMUSMI) Research Group has been investigating the utility of this paradigm for terrestrial use. The technique has particular attractiveness in enabling surveillance of lung health during pandemic scenarios. However, the paradigm has tremendous potential to empower and support nearly any medical question poised in a conscious individual with internet connectivity able to follow the directions of a remote expert. Further studies and development are recommended in all areas of acute and chronic health care.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2884
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • community out-reach (Min. 5–Max. 8)
  • informatics
  • patient self-care
  • point-of-care ultrasound
  • telementoring


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