Certification for the Sonographic Diagnostic Efficiency Protocol (SDEP®). The highest sonographic award for skill, efficiency and communication. 

Certification Overview

Certification for the Sonographic Diagnostic Efficiency Protocol (SDEP®) is awarded to the sonographer with the highest level of sonographic image capture skills (still & video) combined with the most diagnostically efficient manner of obtaining those images as well as the ability to verbalize key points of the SDEP® protocol.

Not only does this add a feather to your cap professionally, it also validates the diagnostic capabilities of your hospital and assures your pet owners that their pet is getting the best care possible.

Post lab, virtual training and support services are available through SonoPath’s educational telemedicine™ services where attendees can work with SonoPath remotely to perfect their image sets.

Attending a hands-on SDEP® Lab with CE credits is only a portion of the journey of going through the full process of attaining a certification in SDEP® protocol. We want the person who becomes certified to represent the SonoPath SDEP® protocol to their best capabilities as well as represent themselves as an accomplished sonographer; that takes time, it’s not something most people can do immediately after a lab.

To become certified in the SDEP® Protocol means working towards excellence, an educational process that takes time and hard work. When you receive your diploma, you know the time and the work required to accomplishment this. “We show you the trail, now you have to hoof it.”

pug graduation

Our SDEP® Certification Programs

SDEP® Abdomen Certification

The SDEP® Abdomen progression was developed to image every type of abdominal pathology including the most challenging views.

The protocol employs a numbering system which references key points in the abdomen in order to identify certain structures such as the pylorus, the portal hilus, the pelvic urethra, adrenal glands, etc.

This system is a universal tool for direct and remote instruction. Specific positions can be referred to in order to direct optimization of the view for a particular pathology.

SDEP® ECHO Certification

The SDEP® Echo progression also utilizes a numbering system to optimize every region of the heart for evaluation of functions, velocities, pressures and chamber sizes.

SDEP® Echo includes three separate measurements for the left atrium and all standard Doppler velocities. Alternative views image the right atrium and auricle to ensure visualization of heart base masses.

This protocol affords the most complete image set for evaluation of the heart from acquired to congenital disease, and is accepted and approved by cardiologists.


  • Must be a telemedicine client for a 4-12 month period, submitting a minimum amount of 10 scans per month. The time frame depends on your own progression to advanced scanning.
  • This allows us to support you in your learning curve and assess how you are progressing with the protocol and help recommend when you are ready to progress to the next steps of the certification process. We do it this way because we expect high level advanced views for anyone wanting to achieve certification.
  • Applicant must be able to scan acceptably at an advanced level before applying for certification.
  • Must have completed AT LEAST ONE (1) SonoPath SDEP® lecture/wet lab in that particular cavity, in which the certification is sought. (A virtual or online SDEP® lab is acceptable in place of a hands-on lab, however when possible the hands-on in person labs are preferred).

Requesting an Application

It takes most applicants 6-12 months before they are ready to apply for certification after taking a SDEP® lab.  By the time you are ready to test, it should be easy because you have already done the hard work and certification proves that you did. 

  1. Complete Pre-requisite of scan submissions as a telemedicine client
  2. Request application to apply for SDEP® Certification in your area of focus; SDEP® Abdomen or SDEP® Echo 
  3. After you submit your application – complete the 3 required steps

After You Apply

  • Written exam is based on thorough knowledge of the SDEP® protocol, properties of and use of each probe, probe hand maneuvers.
  • After passing the written exam, the applicant may take the practical exam. You must submit one scan on a cat, small-med dog, and large dog (over 65#). These must be genuine patients and you will receive a report. Indicate in the “notes to specialist” box – consider for SDEP certification. Cases must be submitted to Dr Lindquist. You may be asked to submit an additional scan.
    • Perform a diagnostic scan in 15 minutes or less
    • Demonstrate ABDOMEN higher end views: follow CBD to D-Pap, urethra 3-4 cm past CUJ, GES ;pylorus, ICCJ, shunt hunt; proper use of power Doppler and color flow; proper measurement of kidneys and adrenals.
    • Demonstrate all CARDIAC views and measurements including the 5 SDEP measurements, accurate color flow and Doppler velocities.
    • At least one submitted scan must be labeled with the SDEP positions for that cavity. May be required on more than one scan at the discretion of SonoPath.

(Must be completed successfully in order, within a 12-month period following applicant’s initial registration date)

Your Investment

  • SDEP® Hands-On lab; many people take more than one lab to help them advance prior to applying for certification
    Click for current SDEP®lab schedules
  • Required Pre-requisite scans. An average of 10 scans per month minimum is recommended, at the current telemed price, until you are scanning the SDEP® protocol at an advanced level  Click to request Telemed Price List
  • Application fee: $600

Request Your Application

Fill out the following form to apply for SDEP® Certification in your area of focus; SDEP® Abdomen or SDEP® Echo.