The Human Placenta Project

Challenges in Ultrasound - Premeeting Discussion Summary trending idea

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What are the most exciting features coming out of ultrasound research?

• 3D/4D automation with real-time post-processing

• MRI/US fusion – has been usefully employed in gyne. cancer

• AI and deep learning is definitely at the forefront of the recent advances

• Functional information on target organs such as the placenta with tools including Volume Flow and FMBV

• Novel US techniques such as wave reflection in the umbilical artery

• Novel post processing techniques such as virtual reality representations

Do the panel think the advances have moved from hardware towards software solutions?

• Does post processing need to be real-time? Would end users be prepared to wait for reporting like MRI or CT reports if it meant improved information?

• How can we improve standardization to ensure data can be shared and novel techniques translated to other researchers/clinicians?

• The most exciting advances have come from post-processing software which can generate standardized measures such as Fractional Limb Volume and Fractional Moving Blood Volume

Is there room for novel hardware?

• Attention has been paid to 'stitching' images together to increase the size of the volume captured

• Could this be improved by spatial monitoring of where the probe is?

• Is there a role for sensors on the body surface? Possibly contoured? 3D US tomography

• Can the US probe be radically changed to generate a 'half-pipe' arrangement similar to CT/MRI to increase 3D images?

What are the major barriers to clinical translation?

• Lack of standardization (machine settings etc.)

• Lack of 'end-user' understanding of the physics of US

• Lack of co-operation from the US manufacturers to share the raw data (No incentivisation yet sharing happens with other imaging modalities such as MRI)

• Lack of ground truth/gold standards e.g. for parameters such as oxygenation and novel techniques such as SMI

• Not able to use US contrast agents in pregnancy

Is there a role for animal models to generate 'gold-standard, ground truth' data?

• Should this be cheaper smaller animals with individualised US probes?

• Should we be using larger animals such as porcine models so that we can use the same US machines and it is directly translatable?

• There definitely appears to be a role for animals to validate techniques/measures such as comparing 3D-FMBV against radio-active microparticles to demonstrate it is indeed a measure of tissue perfusion

Is there a role for these novel technologies in Low income countries?

• The panel felt education in US techniques including AI assisted pattern recognition and automated biometry would be the most useful in this situation

• The new smart phone US hardware will hopefully revolutionise accessibility to US

 

 

Please feel free to comment on any of these identified themes and questions.

Thank you

Which theme and set of objectives does your response address? THEME E: Ultrasound

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