Three-dimensional Echocardiography Advances for Measurement of Ventricular Volume and Mass

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There is a need for more accurate and reproducible serial measurement of left ventricular volume and mass in individual subjects by echocardiography. Conventional echocardiography has significant measurement variability because of its use of geometric assumptions and image plane positioning errors. Guided three-dimensional echocardiography eliminates geometric assumptions and reduces image plane positioning errors by using a “line of intersection” display. Use of threedimensional guided imaging for a one-dimensional measurement of the left ventricle resulted in a threefold improvement of interobserver variability over conventional echocardiographic measurements. Computer-aided three-dimensional reconstruction of the ventricle for ventricular volume from a series of 8 to 10 short-axis images also achieved more than a threefold improvement of interobserver variability compared with twodimensional echocardiography. Three-dimensional echocardiographic computation of ventricular volume and mass in healthy subjects was achieved with an accuracy comparable to magnetic resonance imaging and was superior to two-dimensional echocardiography. Three-dimensional echocardiography promises to be a more accurate method of estimating left ventricular volume and mass and may be suitable for serial study of individual subjects because of its improved accuracy and decreased interobserver variability compared with conventional echocardiographic methods.

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