EUS requires a significant capital outlay. The ability to perform high-resolution phased array scanning and Doppler interrogation by using a catheter that interfaces with a standard US console could increase the accessibility of EUS. Recently, an electronic phased-array US catheter was developed for intracardiac use. To date, this technology has not been applied to the GI tract. The aim of this study is to determine the feasibility and imaging characteristics of a new phased array scanning US catheter in the GI tract. Swine were placed under general anesthesia. This study used a 100 cm, 10F, torquable catheter with 4-way tip deflection to greater than 90 degrees. The catheter tip houses a phased vector array transducer with variable frequency (5.5-10 MHz) and variable focal distance. It has pulsed/color and power Doppler capability. The probe was passed through a therapeutic flexible sigmoidoscope into the upper GI tract. Acoustic coupling was achieved via a condom filled with water or by gastric water infusion. Needle visualization experiments were performed with a second endoscope (also passed per oral) with a standard EUS-guided fine needle aspiration needle. Acoustic coupling was easily achieved. Resolution of the GI wall into characteristic layers (esophagus 5, stomach 7) was demonstrated. At 5.5 MHz, tissue resolution and Doppler imaging were excellent to greater than 10 cm from the transducer. A 22-gauge EUS-guided fine needle aspiration needle was easily visualized at depth greater than 4 cm. Flow in gastric, hepatic, and pancreatic parenchymal vessels approximately 1 mm diameter was visualized by using power and color Doppler. This 10F array US catheter is capable of high-resolution two-dimensional imaging of the gut wall as well as high-quality Doppler imaging. The Doppler capabilities of this equipment may have new GI applications.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging