Monday, November 30, 2009

Mindray Introduces Significant New Upgrade for M5 Ultrasound Platform

MAHWAH, N.J., Nov. 30 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Mindray Medical International Limited (NYSE: MR), a leading developer, manufacturer and marketer of medical devices worldwide, today announced the introduction of a significant new upgrade for the company's popular M5 ultrasound system at the 95th Annual Meeting of the Radiology Society of North America being held in Chicago, November 29 - December 4, 2009. The upgrade includes automatic presets for each new exam and the addition of another state-of-the-art transducer.

"This new upgrade is the third significant upgrade for the M5 platform," said Michael Thompson, vice president of U.S. ultrasound sales for Mindray. "It provides several key performance improvements in addition to ease-of-use advances for this highly reliable system."

The M5 upgrade features factory-installed exam set-ups for difficult adult abdominal and pediatric abdominal imaging. Further enhancements have also been made to pulse wave (PW) Doppler and low-flow color performance (sensitivity) on linear transducers for vascular applications. The new iZoom(TM) feature increases image size which is especially helpful in the operating room or for a special procedures suite where the clinician needs to view the screen across a sterile field, procedure table. Additional connectivity improvements have been added which support seamless file transfers.

source: PR newswire

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Toshiba Enters Ultra Portable Ultrasound Market with New Laptop

CHICAGO, Nov. 29, 2009 – Many hand-carried ultrasound systems offer better access to patients when space is compromised, but cannot provide all of the advanced radiology capabilities required to perform exams in today’s demanding ultrasound environment.

Designed to meet the needs of today’s hospitals by combining portability with high-end radiology features, Toshiba America Medical Systems, Inc. introduces the new ViamoTM laptop ultrasound system (works-in-progress), the industry’s no-compromise ultrasound system with advanced radiology capabilities, previously unavailable on hand-carried systems. Toshiba will showcase the Viamo at this year’s Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) annual meeting, held in Chicago, Nov. 29 – Dec. 4 (Booth #5629, South Hall).

The Viamo combines the portability of a laptop system with advanced radiology features to deliver outstanding image quality, enhance diagnostic confidence and improve ease of us'e. Developed from a radiology foundation, Toshiba’s Viamo provides the confidence to image patients at bedside, which generally requires larger, more expensive cart-based systems. When an immobile patient needs a high-end ultrasound exam, the portable Viamo laptop ultrasound is brought to the patient to improve the patient’s comfort without compromising exam quality. It is also ideal for a variety of patient exams, including traditional radiology, pediatric, emergency, OB/GYN, vascular and bariatric.

source: Toshiba

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Clearer Ultrasound Images Via "Hyper Lens"

Expecting parents can soon get high-definition baby pictures thanks to a new hyper-lens, which also provides ship captains incredibly accurate maps of the sea floor.

With the new discovery, high-resolution ultrasounds and sonar imaging has now become a possibility.

"The images you get when you try to look at unborn babies [with an ultrasound] are pretty fuzzy. You can see an arm, but you can't clearly see facial structures," ABC Science quoted author Dr Xiang Zhang of the University of California Berkeley in the US, as saying. "With this new technology, we will be able to resolve a baby's face before it's born," he added.

The brass hyperlens is made of 36 fins, spread out in a half circle like a handheld fan.

Each fin, roughly 20 centimetres long, compresses and magnifies incoming sound waves, which makes it easier to tease out the image of a tiny nose or the line of a check bone from an ultrasound.

While Zhang made his hyperlens from brass for easier production, it can also be produced from many other more durable materials, including steel.

source: MedIndia

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Ultrasound enhances noninvasive Down syndrome tests

HOUSTON -- (November 23, 2009) -- The addition of a “genetic sonogram” maximizes the accuracy of non-invasive testing for Down syndrome, said a Baylor College of Medicine researcher who was lead author of a landmark study in the current issue of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

“We wanted to be able to definitively describe the detection and accuracy of noninvasive prenatal screening for the detection of Down syndrome,” said Dr. Kjersti Aagaard-Tillery, assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at BCM and the corresponding author of the report. “Using our data generated in the most comprehensive study performed to date (the FaSTER trial), we demonstrated that the addition of a genetic sonogram to all modes of screening in pregnancy allows for optimal noninvasive prenatal detection of Down syndrome.” (FaSTER stands for First and Second Trimester Evaluation of Risk.)
Early tests

Noninvasive screening for Down syndrome (as well as the other major fetal genetic or chromosomal abnormalities in the developing baby) involves a specific early ultrasound and series of tests for biochemicals in the mother’s blood at particular times during pregnancy. Depending on the institution and clinic, tests are done during the first and/or second trimesters of pregnancy. Optimally, noninvasive screening also includes that a preliminary ultrasound to detect nuchal translucency takes place late in the first trimester. The test measures the clear or translucent space in the tissue at the back of the fetus’ neck. If there is an abnormality, fluid will accumulate in the back of the neck making the nuchal fold area larger.

source: Baylor College of Medicine

Monday, November 23, 2009

EUS-FNA predicts 5-year survival in pancreatic endocrine tumors

Endoscopic ultrasound consists of a flexible endoscope which has a small ultrasound device built into the end. The ultrasound component produces sound waves that create visual images of the digestive tract which extend beyond the inner surface lining. EUS can be used to evaluate an abnormality below the surface such as a growth that was detected at a prior endoscopy or by X-ray. EUS can also be used to diagnose diseases of the pancreas, bile duct, and gallbladder when other tests are inconclusive, and can be used to determine the stage of cancers. Tissue samples, using a fine needle aspiration technique (FNA), can be obtained in real time with EUS guidance should an abnormality be seen.

Pancreatic endocrine tumors (PETs) are tumors from the abnormal growth of pancreatic cells that produce hormone-like chemicals and differ in clinical behavior and prognosis than the more common type of pancreatic cancer of the pancreas glands (adenocarcinoma). Determination of malignant (cancerous) potential through specimens obtained by EUS-FNA can help in the management of these patients. Researchers at the Institute Paoli-Calmettes, Marseilles, France, set out to determine the value of EUS-FNA for the diagnosis of PETs and for classifying the underlying malignant potential of these tumors based on the proposed World Health Organization (WHO) classification. Although EUS-FNA is often used for diagnosing PET, there are no data on its accuracy in determining the malignant potential of PETs and in applying the WHO classification. This single-center, retrospective cohort study, the largest experience of EUS-FNA in the diagnosis of PET, involved 86 patients who had been diagnosed with PETs and submitted to EUS-FNA from January 1999 to August 2008.

source: American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Chest Ultrasound as Useful as Chest CT in the Evaluation of Pediatric Patients With Complicated Pneumonia

Chest ultrasound can serve as a viable alternative to chest CT in the evaluation of pediatric patients with complicated pneumonia and parapneumonic effusion (a build-up of fluid between the lung and chest wall), according to a study published in the December issue of the American Journal of Roentgenology.

Pneumonia in the pediatric population is common. Both the diagnosis and therapy of complicated pneumonia is guided by imaging — CT, to date, playing a central role in complicated cases.

In the study, performed at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx, N.Y., both chest CT and chest ultrasound were performed on 19 children with complicated pneumonia accompanied by parapneumonic effusion. “Our results showed that chest CT did not provide additional clinically useful information that was not also seen on chest ultrasound,” said Terry L. Levin, M.D., lead author of the study.

“No consensus exists on the optimal technique for imaging complicated pneumonia in children. Although chest CT allows rapid image acquisition, the rising use of CT in the pediatric population raises the concern of an increasing ionizing radiation burden,” said Levin. “The benefits of chest ultrasound over chest CT include its portability, absence of need for patient sedation, and that ultrasound does not use ionizing radiation,” she said.

“As a result of our study, we suggest that the evaluation of children with complicated pneumonia include chest radiography and chest ultrasound. Chest CT may be reserved for patients in whom chest ultrasound is technically difficult or discrepant with the clinical findings,” said Levin.

source: ARRS

Monday, November 9, 2009

SonoSite Introduces The SonoAccess iPhone Application For Musculoskeletal Specialties

BOTHELL, WA – November 9, 2009 – SonoSite, Inc. (Nasdaq:SONO), the world leader and specialist in hand-carried ultrasound for point-of-care medicine, today announced the expansion of the SonoAccess™ iPhone® application to include musculoskeletal specialties. SonoAccess is the first iPhone application to provide physicians with a comprehensive multimedia database of ultrasound resource materials.

Dedicated to providing innovative educational tools to musculoskeletal physicians, the SonoAccess app is customized for rheumatologists, orthopedic surgeons, physiatrists and sports medicine physicians. Partnering with leading physicians and educators within the ultrasound community, SonoSite has created a comprehensive library of scanning technique videos with case studies and an expansive image gallery to meet the needs of musculoskeletal physicians.

source: SonoSite

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Philips Ranks First in Overall Service Performance and Manufacturer Satisfaction in 2009 IMV Servicetrak™ Ultrasound Report

Andover, Mass. – Royal Philips Electronics (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHI) announced today that for the 17th consecutive year customers have rated Philips Healthcare No. 1 in overall service performance in a report titled “Ultrasound All Systems.” Part of the annual IMV ServiceTrak™ surveys, the report covered Radiology/OB-Gyn and Cardiology instruments. The results of the 2009 IMV analysis also showed Philips earned a No. 1 ranking in overall manufacturer satisfaction for ultrasound. Additionally, customers ranked Philips No. 1 for probability of repurchase.

“Our service, sales and education teams are continually focused on the customer,” said Tom Kirkland, senior vice president of customer services, North America, for Philips Healthcare. “Ensuring the highest levels of customer satisfaction throughout the product lifecycle enables our customers to focus on delivering the best patient care possible. The purchase process is just the beginning; we strive to build a trusted relationship that makes Philips the obvious choice when it’s time to refresh technology.”

In an independent survey by IMV Limited, more than 2,500 customers were asked to rate ultrasound systems manufacturers on a broad range of factors across the product ownership lifecycle. For the “Ultrasound All Systems” report, Philips received top marks in 21 of 36 categories measured in the study, including those of service engineer performance, help desk telephone support, training and ability to drive industry standards.

source: Philips Medical

Monday, November 2, 2009

Toshiba Introduces New Premium Mid-Sized Ultrasound System

Aplio MX Offers Hospitals Exceptional Value with Advanced Clinical Performance and Improved Portability

TUSTIN, Calif., Nov. 2, 2009 – Hospitals use ultrasound as a first-line diagnostic exam, requiring them to have cutting-edge ultrasound technology available to quickly and efficiently perform a range of patient exams. To meet these demanding clinical needs, while also considering the financial challenges facing many hospitals today, Toshiba America Medical Systems, Inc. has introduced the AplioTM MX ultrasound system, a compact system that offers premium clinical performance and high-end features at an affordable price point.

With the Aplio MX, hospitals will be able to complete advanced ultrasound exams, usually performed with larger, more expensive ultrasound systems, using this smaller, less expensive system without sacrificing quality. The Aplio MX is commercially available now.

“Toshiba is dedicated to listening to our customers and developing comprehensive imaging systems to meet a range of customer needs and offer the greatest value at every price point,” explained Girish Hagan, vice president, Marketing, Toshiba. “Toshiba’s Aplio MX offers exceptional value by enabling hospitals to perform high-end radiology exams with more portability and better patient access, with a smaller, less expensive system.”

source: Toshiba Medical