Ultrasound practice by nurses in obstetric nursing consultations

There is an increasing number of complaints reporting the performance of ultrasound exams by nursing professionals, especially for use in consultations, as a tool for qualifying care for pregnant women, for example.

At the same time, there is a multiplication of training initiatives for midwifery nurses in the performance of ultrasounds during nursing consultations, some supported by the Federal Nursing Council - COREN.

Although it is the competence of the nursing professional to analyze the patient under the aspects of nursing care, he is not allowed to perform or interpret image exams, nor to take specialization courses and qualification in ultrasound by these professionals.

The examination, of any kind, which results in diagnosis, is a medical act and as such must be performed and interpreted exclusively by the medical professional, based on Article 4, item VII, of Law No. 12,842 / 2013, the Medical Act Law .

Especially in relation to ultrasonography, Resolution CFM 1361/92, in its article 1, provides that "It is the exclusive competence of the physician to carry out and interpret the ultrasound examination in human beings, as well as to issue the respective report".

Indeed, of all medical examinations of radiology and diagnostic imaging, ultrasonography stands out for being entirely operator-dependent, in which images are produced and interpreted in real time, for the purpose of diagnosis.

In this sense, it is worth mentioning CFM Opinion 35/2017, which analyzed the possibility of carrying out ultrasonography by nurses and which stated, expressly, that the execution and interpretation of the ultrasound examination can only be performed by a doctor, considering that the production of Real-time imaging usually leads to immediate conduct.

In addition, considering that the nurse cannot perform any interpretation, the execution of any examination without purpose exposes the patient to an innocuous act and, in most cases, can even be harmful to his health. It is not for nothing that the Code of Medical Ethics, in its art. 14, expressly prohibits this conduct.

Thus, in line with this understanding, the irregularity of the performance and interpretation of ultrasound exams by Nursing professionals is undeniable, including, of course, also the dissemination of training courses for the same professionals, and the medical community should report such activities, making their legal rights and prerogatives.


CBR Legal Advice


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