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Interactive Guide to the Physical Examination

The Ohio State University College of Medicine and Public Health's Department of Family Medicine has developed an interactive web-based learning center designed to teach medical students the fundamental principles of physical examination. Physician content specialists and web developers are using state-of-the-art, web-portable technologies to bring the sights and sounds of the physical examination alive.

Focusing on eight primary content areas -- head and neck, pulmonary, cardiovascular, abdominal, musculoskeletal, neurological, male and female genitalia-- this innovative product engages students with more than 45 digital video clips and 45+ colorful, interactive multimedia elements. Institutions could integrate this technology into a structured curriculum, or students could use it independently to develop and enhance their physical examination skills.

Objective I: To Provide an Interactive Review of Pertinent Anatomy & Physiology
"... The physician must have knowledge of the external and fundoscopic anatomy of the eye to perform a complete physical examination. ..."

Review the anatomy of the fundus*
"... Before proceeding to examination techniques, a thorough understanding of basic cardiovascular physiology is needed with particular attention to the genesis of heart sounds and timing in the cardiac cycle..."

Review cardiac physiology*
* Requires the use of Flash Player ver 6.

Objective II: To Highlight Normal Exam Findings by Comparing to Selected Abnormal Findings

"... Some disorders involve the optic disc and cup, the retinal veins and arteries or the retina itself. Lesions found on the retina through examination can be described using the optic disc as a reference point and unit of measurement. ...

Perform a fundoscopic exam

"... Abnormal or adventitious breath sounds may indicate the presence of pathology and are generally divided into two categories: discontinuous and continuous sounds. Discontinuous adventitious breath sounds include crackles ...

Listen to breath sounds

* Requires the use of Flash Player ver 6.

Objective III: To Demonstrate Psychomotor Skills Needed to Perform System Specific Physical Examinations

"...The evaluation of the back, like other portions of the musculoskeletal examination, begins with inspection."

Review exam techniques*

** Requires the use of Flash Player ver 7.

Objective IV: To Practice Selected Psychomotor Skills

"...Diaphragmatic excursion, which can be evaluated via percussion, is 4-6 centimeters between full inspiration and full expiration..."

Review diaphragmatic excursion*

"... The pressure within the cardiac cycle reaches a systolic peak and a diastolic trough that are measured and reported as the blood pressure. The difference between the systolic and diastolic pressures is known as the pulse pressure. ..."

Take a blood pressure*

* Requires the use of Flash Player ver 6.

Intended Audience

The primary audience for The Physical Examination are medical students and other health professions students. Secondary users include residents, attending physicians who want to refresh their skills, and other health care professionals.

Software Availability & System Requirements

Information about system requirements and how to order a copy of the Interactive Guide to Physical Examination and be found on the Department of Family Medicine web site.

Project Development Team

Project Directors: Dr. Larry Gabel
Department of Family Medicine, OSU
  Dr. Holly Cronau
Department of Family Medicine, OSU
Content Development by:  Dr. Cynthia Kreger
Department of Internal Medicine, OSU
  Dr. Douglas Knutson
Department of Family Medicine, OSU
Multimedia Development by: Mr. Christopher Fish
2MD :: Medical Multimedia Design,
OSU College of Medicine

Mr. Christopher Finneran
2MD :: Medical Multimedia Design,
OSU College of Medicine

  Mr. Curtis Stewart
New Creativity, Inc.
  Mr. John Kim*
*currently - Stanford University
  Dr. Timothy Cain
2MD :: Medical Multimedia Design,
OSU College of Medicine
Medical Illustrations by: Mr. Stephen Moon
School of Allied Medical Professions, OSU
  Mr. Dennis Mathias
Division of Cardiology, OSU

For More Information

Pamela Beavers
Department of Family Medicine
B0902B Cramblett Hall
456 West 10th Avenue
Columbus, OH 43210
Phone: 614-293-8007
Fax: 614-293-5419

Email: pamela.beavers@osumc.edu

A production of the Center for Knowledge Management, The Ohio State University.

Support for this project comes from the U.S. DHHS Bureau of Health Professions,
Health Resources and Services Administration (1-D05-PE-80150),
and the College of Medicine at The Ohio State University.

© 2008 by The Ohio State University Department of Family Medicine. All rights reserved. No part of this work covered by the copyright may be reproduced or used in any form of by any means -- graphic, electronic, or mechanical including photocopying, recording, taping or information storage and retrieval system -- without permission of the copyright holder. Registered with the United States Copyright Office, Library of Congress. [PAu 2-714-884]

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