Today I has an ultrasound; nothing serious or exciting to report, other than my UX observations.
The machine used was a Phillips xMatrix not dissimilar to the device pictured, taken from www.jakenmedical.com.
Being a UX designer, while trying to take my mind off the procedure, I was studying the buttons and making mental notes about how the operator knew just what to do with these seemingly randomly placed, and unlabelled, buttons and how much training he must have had. This confusing interface lives in an environment where mistakes must be eliminated.
As he was operating the machine I noted the positives of his experience. The machine enabled him to attach different sized sensors, with long cables to reach the patient (i.e me) without dislodging from the ports. The machine is "easily" operated with one hand, while the other is used to manipulator the sensors over the patients body.
I was thinking how well everything was going, all about the UX when I experienced the bad UX I thought such a confusing design afforded - the operator had been entering the wrong labels on the images, and there was no way for the system to go back and change the label to what the organ really was. He then had to delete said images, and redo those parts of the ultrasound, giving me a prolonged ultrasound and a negative experience for all.
My 20 minute ethnography was insightful, it would be an interesting exercise to redesign these machines to improve the UX for both patient and operator.