Dr. Franchi-Abella presented her pediatric liver scanning experience with the Aixplorer at a meeting during the Radiological Society of North America in November 2012.
At the Bicêtre Hospital, the leading French center for liver transplantation in children, Aixplorer’s real-time ShearWave Elastography imaging is used to non-invasively assess liver stiffness. These results are then compared and confirmed with fibrosis staging obtained from biopsy.
In her presentation, Dr. Franchi-Abella underlined the importance of ShearWave Elastography to help physicians in the characterization of the early stages of fibrosis with children. These early stages are often very difficult to detect. She also highlighted the benefits of Aixplorer to monitor evolving liver injuries, including cases of biliary atresia.
“Our experience with the detection and assessment of liver fibrosis for children with ShearWave Elastography is encouraging,” said Dr. Franchi-Abella. “This advanced technology could help to optimize the indications for a biopsy and to monitor spontaneous disease or treatment.”
Aixplorer: an ultrasound system that can provide superior image quality for routine daily use is combined with UltraFast™ technology to expand the frontiers of diagnostic imaging.
Conventional pediatric ultrasound exams are challenging to perform due to small structures that are inherently difficult to image, patient movement, and the inability for young children to perform apnea. Aixplorer, with its UltraFast acquisition ability and its range of probes, overcomes these technical constraints.
Dr. Franchi-Abella cites a particularly challenging case, which illustrates the performance of the Aixplorer in pediatric exams. “My patient was a 12 year old girl with appendicular syndrome, a condition which is difficult to diagnose. The images we acquired with a conventional ultrasound system showed a thickened appendix. This information was not adequate to make a diagnosis. We then scanned the patient with the Aixplorer, where we experienced crystal clear abdominal images that provided a detailed analysis of the wall. We could determine that the thickening was limited to the mucosa related hyperplasia of lymphoid follicles. As a result, the patient was able to avoid an unnecessary operation and was instead treated with medication.”
UltraFast™ Doppler Overcomes Pediatric Constraints By Combining Color Doppler and Pulsed Wave Doppler into One Mode
Dr. Franchi-Abella also stressed the very fast acquisition speed of UltraFast Doppler, which combines Color Doppler and Pulsed Wave Doppler. This tool is particularly suited to pediatrics; data acquisition is completed in a few seconds and the analysis can be performed retrospectively without requiring the patient to be present. UltraFast Doppler provides high flow sensitivity that is very important for vascular characterization in small vessels, an essential requirement in pediatric imaging.
Dr. Franchi-Abella concluded her presentation with, “We are very pleased to have the Aixplorer system in our pediatric department, it is an easy system to use, it renders clinically valuable images and it helps to increase our diagnostic confidence.”
About SuperSonic Imagine (www.supersonicimagine.com)
Founded in 2005 and based in Aix-en-Provence (France), SuperSonic Imagine is an innovative, international company specializing in ultrasound medical imaging. The company designs, develops, and markets a revolutionary ultrasound system, Aixplorer®, with a unique ultrasound imaging technology, called MultiWave™ Technology. This technology allows Aixplorer® to be the only ultrasound system that images two types of waves to better characterize tissue; an ultrasound wave to ensure impeccable image quality and a shear wave, ShearWave™ Elastography, to compute and display true tissue stiffness in real time by acquiring images nearly 200 times faster than conventional systems.
In 2009, SuperSonic Imagine was granted 510(k) clearance by the Food and Drug Administration in the United States and CE mark in Europe for the marketing of Aixplorer®.
Distribution agreements have been signed with prestigious companies such as Hologic (Nasdaq: HOLX) for the breast market in the U.S.A. and Canon (NYSE: CAJ) for Japan. SuperSonic Imagine’s distribution network has now more than 35 partners worldwide.