Point of care ultrasound in pelvic health: scope of practice, education and governance for physiotherapists
AbstractPelvic health and pelvic floor dysfunction have wide-reaching implications across a range of patient groups. Placing ultrasound imaging into the hands of assessing and treating clinicians (i.e. point of care ultrasound, PoCUS) can provide a step change in clinical effectiveness and efficiency. Pelvic floor dysfunction is managed by one or more members of a multi-disciplinary team that includes physiother apists. Physiotherapists’ involvement includes diagnosis, patient education, identifying shared treatment goals, using rehabilitative strategies and empowering patients through self-management. Drawing upon existing publications in this area and applying framework principles, the authors propose a clinical and sonographic scope of practice for physiotherapists as part of supporting the consolidation and expansion of pelvic health PoCUS. Education and governance considerations are detailed to ensure the robust and safe use of this modality. Alongside empowering the use of ultrasound imaging by clinicians such as physiotherapists in the UK and internationally, we provide clarity to other members of the care pathway and ultrasound imaging professionals.