Navigation Links
Duke engineers develop new 3-D cardiac imaging probe

Biomedical engineers at Duke University's Pratt School of Engineering have created a new three-dimensional ultrasound cardiac imaging probe. Inserted inside the esophagus, the probe creates a picture of the whole heart in the time it takes for current ultrasound technology to image a single heart cross section.

The new probe has considerable potential not only for evaluating the condition of the heart, but also for use in guiding therapeutic treatment devices, the researchers said. The new Duke probe can also be used to image the esophagus, rectum, colon and prostate.

A peer-reviewed report on the work was published this month in volume 26 issue number 4 of the journal Ultrasonic Imaging. (Note: Because the journal's publication is backlogged, the issue date is 2004.)

The research is funded by the Heart, Lung and Blood Institute at the National Institutes of Health and by the National Science Foundation.

One form of ultrasound cardiac imaging, called transesophageal echocardiography (TEE), is conducted on hundreds of people each day in the United States. The technique entails inserting a probe down the patient's throat and behind the heart to capture ultrasound heart images. The images can reveal the condition of the heart chambers, valves, major blood vessels and heart tissue. TEE is a safe and fast diagnostic technique.

However, current TEE systems can quickly generate only two-dimensional cross-sectional images. This limitation makes it impractical for use in guiding therapeutic treatment devices such as ablation probes that burn off damaged cells that cause an irregular heart beat. Clinicians must repeatedly and painstakingly reposition the 2-D probe during treatments so, instead, they use fluoroscopy (X-ray movies) to guide the placement of the treatment devices. However, the use of X-ray imaging results in radiation exposure for patients and requires bulky lead-shielding garments for clinicians. In addition, such procedur es take up to seven hours to complete.

Biomedical engineering professor Stephen Smith, who specializes in ultrasound imaging, said a move to three-dimensional imaging is the next logical step.

"Three-D ultrasound is already an established technology in many hospitals," Smith said. "With our new real-time 3-D transesophageal probe, we have all the benefits of the 2-D TEE probe and none of the drawbacks. We can generate sharp, high-contrast images of the whole heart and position heart catheters and ablation devices at the same time. We have already done so in laboratory tests on animals."

Smith and his team, including biomedical engineering graduate student Chris Pua, developed the probe specifically for use in hospitals and clinics. For example, they used the outer casing of a commercially available 2-D TEE probe to house their new 3-D model. The casing design already has been tested and approved for use.

The new Duke 3-D probe is tipped with a dime-sized array of 504 individual ultrasound sensors. Each sensor is as wide as a few human hairs. "It took a craftsman to create this probe," said Smith. "Not many graduate students could have done what Chris Pua has done."

"Maintaining the size of normal TE probes was a main factor in the design since 3-D imaging inherently requires significantly more sensors than 2-D imaging," said Pua. "The original casing held enough cabling for 64 transducer elements whereas our design successfully incorporates 8 times that number."

The probe generates ultrasound at 5 million vibrations per second, which, combined with the 504 sensors, provides great sensitivity and a sharp image, Smith said. And because the image is large enough to encompass the whole volume of the heart, fewer "pictures" need to be taken. This may shorten patient time in clinics, he said.


Source:Duke University

Related biology news :

1. MIT engineers an anti-cancer smart bomb
2. Scientists and engineers apply natures design to human problems
3. Bioengineers create stable networks of blood vessels
4. Rice bioengineers pioneer techniques for knee repair
5. UW-Madison engineers squeeze secrets from proteins
6. MIT engineers probe spiders polymer art
7. Boston University biomedical engineers win major grant for pursuit of the $1,000 Genome
8. A much-needed shot in the arm for HIV vaccine development
9. Clam embryo study shows pollutant mixture adversely affects nerve cell development
10. Weizmann Institute scientists develop a new approach for directing treatment to metastasized prostate cancer in the bones.
11. Scientists develop new color-coded test for protein folding
Post Your Comments:

(Date:11/20/2015)... Connecticut , November 20, 2015 ... authentication company focused on the growing mobile commerce market ... CEO, Gino Pereira , was recently interviewed on ... interview will air on this weekend on Bloomberg ... Latin America . --> NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" ...
(Date:11/17/2015)... Paris from 17 th until 19 ... from 17 th until 19 th November 2015. ... invented the first combined scanner in the world which scans ... now two different scanners were required: one for passports and ... the same surface. This innovation is an ideal solution for ...
(Date:11/12/2015)...  A golden retriever that stayed healthy despite having ... provided a new lead for treating this muscle-wasting disorder, ... of MIT and Harvard and the University of São ... Cell, pinpoints a protective gene that boosts ... The Boston Children,s lab of Lou Kunkel , ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/25/2015)... , Nov. 25, 2015 /PRNewswire/ - Aeterna Zentaris Inc. ... its business and prospects remain fundamentally strong and ... (zoptarelin doxorubicin) recently received DSMB recommendation to continue ... following review of the final interim efficacy and ... Primary Endpoint in men with heavily pretreated castration- ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... 24, 2015  Asia-Pacific (APAC) holds the third-largest ... market. The trend of outsourcing to low-cost locations ... higher volume share for the region in the ... margins in the CRO industry will improve. ... ( ), finds that the market earned ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... Copper is ... it is bound to proteins, copper is also toxic to cells. With a ... Polytechnic Institute (WPI) will conduct a systematic study of copper in the bacteria ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... This fall, global software solutions leader SAP ... states to develop and pitch their BIG ideas to improve health and wellness in ... for votes to win the title of SAP's Teen Innovator, an all-expenses paid trip ...
Breaking Biology Technology: