In 3Dultrasound (US) several 2D images are acquired by moving the probe across the body surface or rotating inserted probes. 3D-mode uses the same basic concept of a 2Dultrasound but rather than take the image from a single angle, the sonographer takes a volume image. The volume image that is displayed on the screen is a software rendering of all of the detected soft-tissue combined by specialized computer software to form three-dimensional images.
The 3D volume rendering technique (VR) does not rely on segmentation (segmentation techniques are difficult to apply to ultrasound pictures) and makes it possible to obtain clear 3Dultrasound images for clinical diagnosis. A 3Dultrasound produces a still image. Diagnostic US systems with 3Ddisplay functions and linear arrayprobes are mainly used for obstetric and abdominal applications. The combination of contrast agents, harmonic imaging and power Doppler greatly improves 3D US reconstructions.
3D imaging shows a better look at the organ being examined and is used for:
Detection of abnormal fetus development, e.g. of the face and limbs.
Visualization of e.g. the colon and rectum.
Detection of cancerous and benign tumors, e.g. tumors of the prostate gland, and breast lesions.
Pictures of blood flow in various organs or a fetus.
Fusion 3D imaging methods for generating compound images from
two sets of ultrasound images (B-mode and Doppler images) enable the observation of the structural relationships between lesions and their associated blood vessels in three dimensions (maximum intensity projection).