Medical Field: Pulmonology and Allergology
Award: Finalist
Country: Croatia
Year: 2021
Research Work: Role of Lung Ultrasound in Predicting Clinical Severity and Fatality in COVID-19 Pneumonia
Published in: Journal of Personalized Medicine


This is an acknowledgement of all the hard work that went into planning and conducting this research.


Pulmonologist Ivan Škopljanac, MD, works at the Clinic for Lung diseases in University Hospital of Split in Croatia. The nomination in the field of Pulmonology and Allergology came as a surprise to him, as the nominated research paper is his first publication ever. He is honoured to be a finalist and to help his patients.

Ivan Škopljanac, MD, was assigned to Covid-19 department in his first year of specialisation in pulmonology. Covid-19 quickly became his main interest in the respiratory field. He believes that we will be dealing with the effects of this disease for many years to come, which is why it is important to study it. Since he and his team conducted the study at the height of the global pandemic, they are grateful for the tremendous support from their hospital. Throughout the study, they have always believed that the results will greatly help their patients.

When I was assigned to the COVID department, I immediately became interested in what COVID lung infections looked like on ultrasound. Very quickly I discovered something incredible - the ultrasound can predict which patient will get worse. For example, many patients were clinically stable at the time of admission to the hospital and required very little oxygen, but had very poor ultrasound findings. This was confusing to me at first, because the patient is doing relatively well, but their findings are very poor. After only a few days, these patients were almost exclusively on a ventilator or a high oxygen flow machine.

The results of the study are extremely important and Ivan Škopljanac, MD, and his team immediately began to use them as a "window into the future" of their daily work. 

We moved patients to wards closer to intensive care units or changed treatment modalities very early on in hopes of preventing or mitigating this poor outcome.

Combining research and clinical work can be very demanding, so he likes to fill his free time with physical activities such as cycling, swimming and sports.