Comparison of 3D and 2D Image Quality



How does the image quality compare with 2D ultrasound?
People generally accept that there is a slight degradation in the image quality due to the focusing of the transducer for parallel processing, but that's made up for by the fact that we're able to focus in all three dimensions rather than just two. For the actual task of detecting a tumour or lesion, because you're able to focus in all three directions, the loss of a little spatial resolution in two directions is compensated for by the 3D resolution. It's not clear whether there is any overall loss of quality - perhaps there is a little bit of a trade-off with high-speed 3D.
There's always room for improvement, however, and many, many people are working to improve ultrasound image quality. We've not yet reached an upper limit.
How is this technology being used commercially?
Most foetal imaging is done in 3D now - the technology of high-speed 3D ultrasound has almost totally overtaken everything in obstetrics. In cardiology also, probably a very high percentage of ultrasound scanners are 3D.
The ground swell of enthusiasm is not quite as great in cardiology as it is in obstetrics, but it's still growing. For example, a few years ago we developed the first 3D transoesophageal probe for cardiology and I think the first commercial version of that was released a few months ago. We have also made 3D catheters for cardiac applications - those have yet to be introduced commercially, although I think a number of companies are working on that. As time goes on, I think you'll see every 2D application supplanted by a 3D probe.
 CCA Intima
 3D,4D Liver
 3D Female fets
 3D Fetal face
 3D Liver
 4 D Bladder
 3D Duodenum
 3D 4D Bladder
3S 4D Obs
 3D 26 week fetal heart
 4D Fetal feet and toes
3D Fetal spain
3D Stimulated Ovary
4D Image of 25 week fetus in Cube