Certification Program Case Report Guidelines

Case Report Format

Each case submitted should list the following at the top left:

  1. Candidate’s name
  2. Patient’s name
  3. Category, Case # (eg. Basic abdomen-3, Basic abdomen-3 revision 2)
  4. Date of original submission
Cases to be submitted:
Normal abdominal and normal echocardiogram (2 cases, one of each) using the IVUSS Standard Abdominal Ultrasound and Echocardiography Imaging Protocol.  The format for cases must show how you perform an ultrasound exam, and each candidate may use their own standard image acquisition protocol.  The order of your standard image acquisition is not as important as obtaining all the required images.
After the normal cases are accepted, the remaining 13 case reports do not need to be submitted in any specific order.  Each case report should be presented as a scientific paper suitable for publication in any veterinary journal.  If the case presentation looks more like the patient’s record than a scientific article, it will not be accepted.  Each case report will contain:
  1. A patient history section with any labwork and radiographs.
  2. All images of your exam with descriptions (to demonstrate your thoroughness).  The order of images in the report should demonstrate how you perform an exam. Date of exam, name of patient, and facility must be on all images.  If an image of a certain small part (lymph node, adrenal gland, pancreas, vessel, duct, ureter, etc) is not obtained, the region should be scanned carefully with a captured image representing that region and an explanation of the process/search.
  3. A sonographic description section should provide a radiology based description of the sonographic presentation without differential diagnoses. Use of references is appropriate here.
  4. A case interpretation section should be your interpretation of the case with differential diagnoses (to demonstrate your knowledge and thought processes, as well as your ability to communicate your findings).  Use of references is appropriate here.
  5. The discussion section of the case presentation should be the most extensive portion. It should reflect thorough research and use of references to support the sonographic findings, differentials, and case conclusion.  All references should be cited in the text.  No more than 50% of the references should be from textbooks, and the remainder should be from published articles.  A minimum of 5 references for each case should be provided, but more are encouraged. The relevance of each cited reference should be explained clearly in the case study text.  The discussion should justify each procedure performed and if a procedure was not performed that would have been indicated, the candidate should explain why the procedure was omitted.  
    • You will likely be requested to revise your discussion section to improve your level of knowledge!  Questions will be asked of you that you will need to answer to ensure you meet the high knowledge standards of the program.
  6. This process gets easier after the first few case reports!

Evaluation of a case report is based on these criteria.  If that criteria is not followed, the case report will not be accepted.  After rejection of 10 cases, the participant will be discontinued from the program with no financial reimbursement.

Case report examples (The image sets presented here are incomplete to save server space.  Size your images to get two per page with description to ease the work load on the reviewers!):  
Click here for an Echocardiography Casebook Format Example

Submissions Guidelines
  • It is recommended that cases can be submitted individually.  The feedback received for each case will help to streamline and improve the process of case submission, as well as improve the candidate’s ability as a sonographer and clinician.
  • Cases should be written based largely on published data and minimally based on personal bias or experience.
  • Case report revisions are common, especially for the first few cases.
  • Discontinued participants will need to complete all coursework again prior to re-enrollment.
  • Case reports are to be submitted in Word or PDF format.  Reports must not be larger than 15MB.  This can be accomplished by exporting images from your ultrasound machine in jpg or jpeg format.  Contact your vendor if you have problems figuring this out!
Case Final Submission and Acceptance:
Once all requested revisions are made, the Certification Committee gives their approval for that case.  The case report will then receive a final review, comments, and suggestions for improvement by either a board certified radiologist or cardiologist.  This way, input is offered from multiple sources to improve the sonographer’s clinical ability.
Honour system:
No outside consultation or advice is acceptable.  Any evidence of outside consultation or advice on case reports or examination material will result in permanent discontinuation from the program.
 

 

Case Report Specifics:
The format for cases must show how you perform an ultrasound exam, and each candidate may use their own standard image acquisition protocol.  The order of your standard image acquisition is not as important as obtaining all the required images.

Basic Abdomen (4 cases) using the IVUSS Standard Abdominal Ultrasound Imaging Protocol, including iliac lymph nodes.  
  • Choose cases with pathology in any of the following organs: liver, gallbladder, spleen, kidneys or ureters, or urinary bladder. Variety within the casebook is required (i.e. do not submit 4 different liver cases).  Examples include masses, urolithiasis, inflammatory changes, etc.
  • Organs with pathology should be represented more thoroughly.
  • Choose cases that will have objective proof of your findings: surgical confirmation, histopathology, cytology, or necropsy.
Advanced Abdomen (5 cases) where the primary pathology is in ) using the IVUSS Standard Abdominal Ultrasound Imaging Protocol (including iliac lymph nodes) where appropriate.
  • Choose cases with pathology in any of the following organs: adrenal glands, reproductive organs, common bile duct, pancreas, gastrointestinal tract, abdominal vasculature, abdominal lymph nodes,  thyroid, parathyroid, salivary gland, non-cardiac thorax, or musculoskeletal.
  • Organs with pathology should be represented more thoroughly.
  • Choose cases that will have objective proof of your findings: surgical confirmation, histopathology, cytology, or necropsy. For the rare case in which confirmation was not possible, the differentials for the pathology imaged should be minimal such as an invasive adrenal tumor.  Exhaustive differentials without definitive cytology or histopathology will be discouraged.
  • Demonstration of your knowledge and use of power and color Doppler, complex documentations such as portal hypertension, biopsy needle placement, shunt examinations will be highly regarded. 
Echocardiography (4 cases) using the IVUSS Standard Echocardiography Imaging Protocol.
  • Include at least one feline and one canine echo.
  • Spectral Doppler in canine should include the LVOT/aortic, RVOT/pulmonic, mitral and tricuspid flows, as well as an example of at least one colorflow examination with explanations for each case submitted. If aliasing is present on PW then CW should be employed to quantify the lesion. Optional, yet where appropriate, demonstrate knowledge and use of insufficiencies, pressure gradients, transmitral flow, IVRT, pulmonary venous flow, etc.
 

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