My first insight is, there is a lot to learn about sonography. My second insight, the technology of sonography is amazing. I will begin this assignment with discussing some of what I learned about the history of practical use for ultrasound in diagnosis and therapies, and then conclude with a futuristic perspective of new technologies in sonography.
“Ultrasound describes sound frequencies beyond the range of normal human hearing, sound frequencies greater than 20 kHz.” (Craig 3) Low intensity ultrasound waves can be used to visualize the interior of the body in a noninvasive and pain free manner. Some common examples of this include viewing tumors, cysts, fetal measurements, identifying multiple pregnancies, studying the heart, viewing inside the eyes, and blood flow. Diagnostic ultrasounds came into existence in the 1940’s by using A-mode producing a “one dimesnsional image.” (Craig 4) One of the first physicians was Karl Dussik his image was of brain lesions. As the technology developed, B-mode used 2D presentations to detect tissue thickness and was used to detect breast cancer. In the 1950’s M-mode marked the beginning of a new diagnostic noninvasive technique that looked at the mitral valve, becoming the echocardiography. Gray-scale brought ultrasound to the mainstream and made the images recordable. The Doppler technique in the 1970‘s was a utilized for “determining blood flow volume.” (Craig 15) In the 1980’s the transducer technology and real time imaging allowed for visualization, this was is standard in obstetrics. In the 1990’s “Harmonic imaging, a quantitative method of distinguishing different types of tissue using contrast.” (Craig 21) The various medical applications of ultrasound include high energy ultrasound waves used for therapeutic ultrasound to remove unwanted tissue. An example of an early medical application that gained wide acceptance was amniocentesis. Intravascular ultrasound made it possible to thread a tiny ultrasound transducing into the coronary arteries.
What the future brings to sonography. I believe the most exciting advancement is hand held technology, the use of artificial intelligence, 3D/4D ultrasound technology and FAST (focus assessment of sonography used in trauma.) Handheld equipment leads to easier point of care solutions. They are cost effective and save time. Currently the developers are working towards smart phone technology. “The use of artificial intelligence software will save time by three to five times faster as compared to manual methods.” (Chougule 2016) In terms of 3D/4D images will lead to greater visualization. Chougule identified some example such as, being able to detect birth defects i.e. cleft palate, and able to see a baby’s face (leading to be able to diagnosis genetic syndromes). (2016) The practical application of 3D and 4D imaging is expansive and exciting.
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