Ultrasound Med Biol 2003 Apr;29(4):575-84
Department of Medical Physics and Medical Engineering, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK.
Categorisation for arterial stenoses treatment is determined primarily by the degree of occlusion, which is often estimated ultrasonically from blood velocity measurements. In current single-beam ultrasound (US) systems, this estimate can suffer from gross errors due to angle-dependence. The purpose of this study was to find out if an experimental dual-beam US system could reduce the angle-dependence of the velocity estimates. We compared four dual-beam velocity estimation algorithms on both a string phantom and straight tube wall-less flow phantoms incorporating symmetrical and asymmetrical stenoses from 0% to 91% by area. The estimated maximum velocity varied, on average, by 7.6% for beam-vessel angles from 40 degrees to 80 degrees. The fluctuation in the magnitude estimate was reduced by a factor of 2.6 using a hybrid single-dual-beam algorithm. We conclude that, when the true velocity lies in the scan plane, the dual-beam system reduces the angle-dependence and, thus, has the potential to improve categorisation of patients with arterial stenoses.