Workshop helps residents and medical students practice advanced physical diagnosis skills

Children's Health

Senior medical students and residents joined together to learn about and practice advanced physical diagnosis skills during a recent workshop on September 15. The workshop was led by Shivani Patel, MBBS, MS, a health system clinician in Pediatrics in the Division of Cardiology, and a pediatric cardiologist at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital.

The workshop is part of a series of advanced physical diagnosis workshops organized by the Augusta Webster, MD, Office of Medical Education (AWOME) in partnership with the graduate medical education programs of the McGaw Medical Center of Northwestern University.

Physicians learn basic physical exam skills early in medical school but being able to identify subtle physical exam findings takes focused practice over many years. Mastering the physical exam is fundamental to providing patient-centered, high-quality and value-based care. It’s a win-win when students and residents learn alongside each other.”

Toshiko Uchida, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine, Division of General Internal Medicine and Geriatrics and of Medical Education

Patel leads medical students and residents through a cardiac auscultation exercise during the workshop.

During the workshop, third- and fourth-year medical students practiced alongside residents from across disciplines to identify abnormal heart sounds using a Next Generation Harvey patient simulator. The mannequin realistically simulates cardiovascular disease symptoms and sounds, such as fluctuating pulses, normal and abnormal heart sounds and murmurs, to help students, residents and healthcare providers alike sharpen their skills in listening to the heart – a process known as cardiac auscultation.

A second heart sounds workshop, also being led by Patel, will be held on September 22. Future workshops, which will be held quarterly, will highlight other physical exam findings while also having students and residents learn together.

“Residents and students work so closely in the clinical setting, and regularly learn from each other. These workshops are another opportunity where that takes place in a more structured way,” said Marianne Green, MD, the Raymond H. Curry, MD, Professor of Medical Education and vice dean for Education.

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