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Ultrasound: Demand It.

  • 1 Nathaniel Reisinger, MD, is a fellow with the Renal-Electrolyte and Hypertension Division, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania & Penn Presbyterian, Philadelphia.
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Improvised hastily by a young physician to avoid the embarrassment from direct auscultation of a particularly buxom patient’s chest, the stethoscope recently celebrated its 200th anniversary. After initial resistance, it has since become standard of care and a ubiquitous icon of the physician (1).

Technology has improved since the Napoleonic era, and more sophisticated devices are now available to augment the physical exam. Ultrasound was originally applied as sonar to hunt submarines in the First World War, but was quickly co-opted into the medical field. Early machines occupied entire rooms, but now powerful imaging devices are handheld and

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