In the past years, anesthesiologists have progressively incorporated the use of ultrasound guidance to facilitate the performance of various procedures such as vascular access and peripheral nerve blockade to improve their efficacy and safety. Furthermore, anesthesiologists have also incorporated the concept of Point-of-care ultrasonography (POCUS) that is performed and interpreted by the clinician at the bedside. Dr. Arzola's research aims to conduct clinical investigation into problems and questions related to ultrasound-assisted procedures and Point-of-Care Ultrasonography in anesthesiology with a special interest in obstetric Anesthesia.
The use of spinal ultrasound to facilitate neuraxial anesthesia has been an important line of research. His team explored spinal and epidurals in the lumbar spine for obstetric and orthopedic patients as well as epidurals in the thoracic spine. The influence of this line of research has reached national guidelines (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence-NICE, UK), publications in high impact anesthesiology journals and wide scope medical journal (British Medical Journal). As a result, this research has generated multiple national and international invited lectures and workshops. Pulmonary aspiration of gastric contents is a serious perioperative complication that carries significant morbidity and mortality and gastric content and volume assessment is a new point-of-care ultrasound application that can help determine aspiration risk. His research team has described learning curves to acquire competence in gastric ultrasound, reliability of ultrasound assessment of gastric volume and characterization of various populations such as adults and pregnant women. Furthermore, we have secured funding support from a peer-review grant to investigate the obstetric population. Other areas of research include the use of ultrasound for airway management such as crycothyrotomy in the context of surgical airway and lung ultrasound in high-risk obstetric patients.