"This is a tool that not only gives better care, but also faster care."
Bay medical center emergency room physicians now have a new tool to help with patient diagnosis.
"We have gotten a hand held ultra sound machine, which allows us to better assess the patient at the bedside --we're kind of calling it the stethoscope of the future."
The bedside unit does the work of any other type of ultrasound machine, but its advantage is it's smaller, portable and can be used right there on the scene.
It's especially handy for trauma patients and for patients who have a difficult IV access. You know that person who gets stuck over and over and over again because their veins either roll or they're just difficult to find. The ultrasound machine will find them right away and stick the patient only once."
The machines can be used to determine the cause of abdominal pain, such as bleeding after an accident or to check the condition of a fetus in a pregnant mother. They also speed up the diagnostic process.
"We can, all in one exam basically do our examination and then do the ultrasound right away. The patient doesn't have to go over to an ultrasound department and get a second exam. So it's more convenient and certainly more comfortable for patients."
"Really helps in decision making right on the spot as to where the patient needs to go first."
And those long E.R. waits could be a lot shorter because of these machines.
"We can get patients out of the E.D. more quickly turn over our beds and get patients back more quickly."
Dr. Green says ultrasound guided vascular access is becoming the standard of care and in the future we'll probably see more and more of it.