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Professor of Surgery from Penn State Hershey Speaks to South Hills Students

South Hills Community News Release

"For most types of ultrasound scanning, we are imaging anatomy. In vascular ultrasound, we are looking at physiology. We see the physiology happening right in front of our eyes in real time, and it's all noninvasive."

STATE COLLEGE — Such was the opening statement of Dr. Robert Atnip's presentation to South Hills School of Business & Technology’s second-year Diagnostic Medical Sonography (DMS) students.

Dr. Atnip, Professor of Surgery and Director of Noninvasive Vascular Lab at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, continued by reviewing the development of diagnostic ultrasound imaging from the beginnings of scientific theory. He described Pythagoras' experiment with vibrating strings, Aristotle's experiments of sound moving through the air, Galileo’s work with frequency and pitch of the sound, and finally Pierre Curie's discovery of the Piezoelectric effect in 1880.

He went on to discuss modern pioneers of duplex Doppler ultrasound used in vascular diagnoses, such as Dr. Eugene Strandness of the University of Washington in the 1970's. The equipment used in this groundbreaking research was primitive by today's standards but set the stage for the development of the sophisticated equipment in use today.

He presented several interesting cases in which vascular ultrasound played an important role, described the day-to-day experiences of working in a vascular ultrasound lab and ended by fielding many questions from the class.

Dr. Atnip has been a member of the South Hills DMS Advisory Board for many years as the Medical Advisor for the vascular track, one of three tracks available in the CAAHEP-accredited Diagnostic Medical Sonography program.

More Stories from the MUAM 2018 Speaker Series

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