Impact of bedside ultrasound on care in specialist palliative care units: a qualitative study

Steven Moore, Bethany Stoneham, Vanessa Taylor, Paul Perkins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: To explore the experiences of palliative care doctors regarding the clinical impact of ultrasound in specialist palliative care units (SPCUs). 

Methods: The study adopted a qualitative research design using semistructured interviews and a reflexivity journal. Six participants were recruited through purposive and snowball sampling. Findings were analysed using framework analysis. 

Results: Analysis used four predetermined themes: (1) practicalities, (2) clinical indications, (3) impact on patient care and service provision and (4) governance and training. Analysis identified a relationship between procedural confidence and use of ultrasound. 

Conclusions: Our study provides information for understanding the current use and limitations of ultrasound in SPCUs. Ultrasound leads to safer practice, especially when performing invasive procedures such as paracentesis. Development of standards around the use of, and training of staff undertaking ultrasound in specialist palliative care, are recommended.

Original languageEnglish
Article number004619
Number of pages6
JournalBMJ Supportive and Palliative Care
Early online date18 Nov 2023
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 18 Nov 2023

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