Publication Date


Degree Awarded Date

December 22, 2022



Background: Pulmonary aspiration is a significant risk of general anesthesia and is related to increased perioperative morbidity and mortality. Gastric point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) has been shown to be a reliable indicator of gastric contents and volume, and it can be used in the perioperative setting to detect gastric contents and make informed clinical decisions to prevent aspiration events.

Purpose: This project aimed to educate Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) at Washington University in the use of point-of-care ultrasound to assess gastric contents prior to surgery with the overall goal of improving knowledge, skills, and attitudes towards this practice among participants.

Methods: Participants were provided with written materials and a pre-recorded lecture detailing the current state of gastric POCUS research and how to perform and interpret a gastric POCUS assessment. They then attended a live session where each participant performed their own hands-on POCUS exams with various prandial states. A pre- and post-survey design was used to determine changes in knowledge and attitudes among participants in response to the education.

Results/Discussion: Ten CRNAs participated in the education. All participants successfully completed the modules and attended the live education. Post-survey responses showed significant improvement in both knowledge, and attitudes at three separate time points following the education when compared to the pre-surveys. These results suggest brief hands-on education can significantly improve knowledge, and attitudes regarding gastric POCUS for CRNAs.


English (en)

Document Type



Torres, Brian DNP, CRNA (Chair) Barnes Jewish College, Goldfarb School of Nursing

Associated Committee

Zerlan, Mary DNP, CRNA (Committee Member) Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis

Lakshminarasimhachar, Anand MD (Committee Member) Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis

Included in

Nursing Commons