Three dimensional power Doppler of the placenta and its clinical applications

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The aim of this review is to discuss three dimensional (3D) power Doppler of the placenta and its clinical applications. There is a strong clinical need to develop noninvasive, simple and widely available methods of evaluating in vivo placental function to assess fetal wellbeing. While conventional ultrasound is a proven tool in the evaluation of fetal structural anomalies and health, its ability to assess placental function, especially prior to the onset of fetal compromise, is the subject of ongoing investigation. Three dimensional power Doppler has the ability to detect vascularity and blood flow with greater detail than conventional ultrasound, which has led to its investigation in preeclampsia, fetal growth restriction, and other placental vascular abnormalities. While more data are needed on the optimal imaging protocol and its predictive ability for clinical outcomes, 3D power Doppler is emerging as a promising new technology that will improve the evaluation of placental function.

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