Hands-on Gross Anatomy Instruction Improves Clinical Imaging Skills Among Cardiovascular Fellows

Journal of Medical Education and Curricular Development (04/29/19) O'Leary, JM; McNeely, DE; Damp, JA; et al.

Researchers conducted a pilot study to test the theory that hands-on gross anatomy education would improve the imaging interpretation skills of cardiovascular (CV) fellows, using a first-year CV fellowship class engaged in a two-hour-long cadaveric anatomy session that correlated with clinical imaging. The researchers assessed participants' skill in identifying CV structures on cardiac imaging at baseline, one week, and six months following the intervention. Advanced CV fellows in their second or third year who had not participated were evaluated as well. The average assessment score was higher one week after the intervention compared with baseline, and it continued to exceed baseline after six months. The six-month post-intervention score for first-year fellows did not differ significantly from that of non-participating senior fellows, while eight of the nine participating first-year fellows improved their score from before to after the session. The results suggest the intervention's impact is sustained for at least six months and emphasize the value of reinforcement of the basic sciences in medical training at times when they can be directly associated with clinical skills. The researchers concluded that their work "is an important proof-of-concept study suggesting such an approach may be beneficial."

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