A novel algorithm for comprehensive fetal echocardiography using 4-dimensional ultrasonography and tomographic imaging.

Journal of ultrasound in medicine : official journal of the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine

PubMedID: 16870887

Espinoza J, Kusanovic JP, Gonçalves LF, Nien JK, Hassan S, Lee W, Romero R. A novel algorithm for comprehensive fetal echocardiography using 4-dimensional ultrasonography and tomographic imaging. J Ultrasound Med. 2006;25(8):947-56.
OBJECTIVE
Tomographic ultrasound imaging (TUI) is a new display modality that allows simultaneous visualization of up to 8 parallel anatomic planes. This study was designed to determine the role of a novel algorithm combining spatiotemporal image correlation and TUI to visualize standard fetal echocardiographic planes.

METHODS
Volume data sets from fetuses with and without congenital heart defects (CHDs) were examined with a novel algorithm that allows simultaneous visualization of the 3-vessel and trachea view, the 4-chamber view, and outflow tracts. Visualization rates for these planes as well as the ductal arch and 5-chamber view were calculated.

RESULTS
(1) Two hundred twenty-seven volume data sets from fetuses without (n = 138) and with (n = 14) CHDs were reviewed; (2) among fetuses without CHDs, the 4-chamber view, 5-chamber view, ductal arch, 3-vessel and trachea view, left outflow tract, and short axis of the aorta were visualized in 99% (193/195), 96.9% (189/195), 98.5% (192/195), 88.2% (172/195), 93.3% (182/195), and 87.2% (170/195) of the volume data sets, respectively; (3) these views were visualized in 85% (17/20), 80% (16/20), 65% (13/20), 55% (11/20), 55% (11/20), and 70% (14/20) of the volume data sets, respectively, from fetuses with CHDs; and (4) simultaneous visualization of the short axis of the aorta, 3-vessel and trachea view, left outflow tract, and 4-chamber view was obtained in 78% (152/195) of the volume data sets from fetuses without CHDs and in 40% (8/20) of those with CHDs.

CONCLUSIONS
The 3-vessel and trachea view, the 4-chamber view, and both outflow tracts can be simultaneously visualized using a novel algorithm combining spatiotemporal image correlation and TUI.