Markus Ziesmann

May 2016

  • Residency Program: University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors:

Markus Ziesmann completed a Bachelor of Science degree majoring in Biochemistry before attending medical school at the University of Manitoba. He enrolled in the Bachelor of Science in Medicine research program and successfully defended his thesis work describing fifteen years of local experience managing paediatric cardioembolic strokes. Upon graduation, Markus entered the General Surgery residency program at the University of Manitoba and is currently the program’s Chief resident. During residency he took on several administrative roles including serving on the Board of Directors for both the Canadian Association of Internes and Residents (2011-2012) and Doctors Manitoba (2012-2013) and was the Co-President of the Professional Association of Residents and Interns of Manitoba (2012-2013). Upon graduating in 2016, he plans to pursue both trauma surgery and critical care fellowships, working towards a career as an academic acute care surgeon.

Markus’s MSc thesis work focused on the development and validation of a quantitative quality-assessment tool for the FAST exam. Current training in FAST exam technique lacks validation; in an era of competency-based training, validated assessment tools will be increasingly important. The proposed quantitative assessment metrics for the FAST exam included a global rating scale and task-specific checklist, each measuring specific domains of FAST exam performance, coupled with objective hand motion analysis measures including number of hand movements and total path length of hand travel. Cohorts of novice and expert FAST performers were recorded performing the exam and subsequently scored using the assessment metrics.

Experts scored significantly higher than novices on all eight domains of the global rating scale and three out of four domains on the task checklist, while completing the task with a shorter path length of travel and making fewer movements. The global rating scale and task checklist demonstrated extremely high discriminatory power, with areas under the receiver operating characteristic curves of 97% and 90% respectively. Thus, these metrics were shown to be valid measures for assessing FAST imaging competence which will be useful for defining training standards in a competency-based curriculum, for comparing FAST skill with clinical outcomes, and for assessing the success of training interventions.

This research was funded by the University of Manitoba Department of Surgery GFT Research Fund, and has been presented at the 2014 meetings of the Trauma Association of Canada and the American Association for the Surgery of Trauma. For this work, Markus was a finalist in the University of Manitoba Three Minute Thesis competition, and was awarded the AAST Research and Education Foundation In-Training Fellow Scholarship. Portions of this research have been published as “Validation of the Quality of Ultrasound Imaging and Competence (QUICk) score as an objective assessment tool for the FAST examination” by Ziesmann et al, May 2015, in the Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery.