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Characterisation of ultrasound guided popliteal nerve block

Title: Performance and error metrics for ultrasound guided popliteal nerve block.

Investigating team: Fahd Aamir, George Shorten, Anthony Gallagher

Background: Medical error may be the third leading cause of death in the USA. Changes in work patterns and decreased training time has disrupted traditional forms of clinical skills acquisition. In addition, newer techniques such as ultrasound guided regional anaesthesia have now made the transition from optional skills to core competencies within structured anaesthesia training programmes.

One such method is simulation based training, which has shown positive effects on knowledge and skills acquisition and when combined within a structured learning programme and trainees are provided repeated individual feedback, those gains increase significantly compared to traditional techniques.

Known as proficiency based progression; one of the core components of which is a task analysis of the skill in question. Previous work at our institution has defined and assessed proficiency based training for ultrasound guided axillary brachial plexus blocks.

Objective: To define the metrics and errors for ultrasound guided popliteal nerve blocks to allow further development of a proficiency based training programme for regional anaesthesia at our institution. This will involve utilising the experience of and achieving consensus amongst a group of expert regional anaesthesiologists to define a task analysis for ultrasound guided popliteal nerve blocks.

Preliminary results: Pending

Current status: Recruitment phase

Department of Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine