3D 4D Ultrasound

The Differences

This article talks about 3D 4D ultrasound and the similarities and differences between them in sonography.

3D ultrasound can provide us with a 3 dimensional picture of what’s being scanned. A series of images are taken by the transducer. These are thin slices of the subject that are then processed by the computer. The images are then presented in 3D during the pregnancy.

3D 4D Ultrasound Operator:

The operator can obtain images that may not be possible if using 2 dimensional ultrasound. 3-dimensional diagnostic ultrasound is fast moving out of the research and development stages and is now widely used in a clinical setting. It is also prevalent in the News.

3d 4d ultrasound

Faster and more advanced commercial models are now emerging onto the market like 4d ultrasound. Special probes and software are needed to accumulate and render the images. The rendering time has now been reduced from minutes to fractions of seconds.

High quality 3 dimensional images are often very impressive to pregnant parents. Further 2D scans may be taken from 3D blocks of scanned information. Volumetric measurements are more precise and both doctors and parents can better appreciate a certain abnormality or the absence of a certain abnormality in a 3D scan than a 2D one and there is the possibility of increasing psychological bonding between the parents and the unborn baby.

An increasing amount of literature is accumulating with regard to the usefulness of 3D diagnostic ultrasound and it is likely that the diagnosis of congenital anomalies may receive revived attention. Evidence to date has already indicated that smaller defects such as spina bifida, cleft lips/palate, and polydactyl may be more easily recognized.

Additional subtle characteristics such as low set ears, or clubbed feet can be better assessed, leading to faster and more appropriate diagnosis of chromosomal abnormalities.

Studies of fetal cardiac malformations are also receiving attention. Operator skill is still the determining factor in gaining a high quality 3D picture, the amount of liquor (amniotic fluid) around the fetus, its position and the degree of maternal obesity, so that a good image is not always obtainable.

In more recent times, 4D or dynamic 3D scanners are available on the market and the attraction of being able to look at the face and movements of your unborn baby has also been reported with great enthusiasm in parenting and health magazines. It is believed that this has an important catalytic effect for mothers to bond to their babies before birth.

Commonly termed 're-assurance scans' and 'entertainment scans', these have quickly gained great popularity.

The majority of experts do not consider that 3D and 4D ultrasound will be a mandatory evolution of our conventional 2D scans, they see it rather as an additional tool similar to doppler ultrasound.

The great majority of diagnostics will still be made using 2D scans. 3D ultrasound seems to have a great deal of potential in research and in the study of fetal embryology.

It remains to be seen whether 3D 4D ultrasound will provide unique information or merely supplement information that can already be determined with 2D scans.

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