Evaluating a patient for a deep venous thromboembolism (DVT) using ultrasound is a common procedure in the emergency department. Teaching a clinician to identify a DVT on ultrasound is often done on a phantom, which is a synthetic model intended to simulate a clinical scenario. Traditional commercial ultrasound phantoms modeling a DVT can be prohibitively expensive. We have created a DVT phantom that is realistic, easily reproducible, and affordable.
The phantom was constructed by embedding a water-filled balloon containing a smaller balloon filled with water and an acrylic polymer in a gelatin-Metamucil mixture.
This ultrasound phantom simulates a vein with presence of a clot in a portion of the vessel. The balloon system used can be recreated in multiple ways, creating a phantom that is highly changeable.
This phantom is durable, easily created, and affordable. It provides clinicians the ability to learn to identify a DVT on a phantom prior to performing the procedure on a patient.
Aaron Zweig, Medical Resident, Vidant Medical Center/East Carolina University