Axial Resolution In Ultrasound: What Is It And Why It’s Important
So you probably hear a lot about resolution. And you should, because in ultrasound, we care a lot about resolution. The better the resolution in ultrasound, the better quality images we get. And the better quality images we get, the more accurate information we’re able to give the physicians.
What Is Resolution?
In ultrasound imaging, resolution is the ability to image structures accurately. As I stated above, accuracy of the images we acquire is the most important aspect of ultrasound.
There are many forms of resolution. But in this post, we are going to discuss Axial Resolution and define what it is. It’s an important one, so you should become familiar with it if you’re just starting out learning ultrasound.
In short, axial resolution has to do with the detail in quality of structures that are parallel to the ultrasound beam.
Furthermore, axial resolution measures the ability of an ultrasound system to display two structures along the ultrasound beam that are very close to each other. It’s important to note, however, that with axial resolution, these two structures are parallel to the ultrasound beams main axis. That is to say that the structures being imaged are positioned one in front of the other.
In other words, axial resolution is what determines the minimum distance between two structures that are positioned one on top of the other, along the main ultrasound beam. This minimum distance is what allows the ultrasound to produce two distinct structures on a single image.
How Is Axial Resolution Measured?
Axial resolution has to do specifically with distance. So any unit of distance can be used to measure axial resolution. The most common units of measurement for axial resolution are nm and cm.
What Determines Axial Resolution?
The thing that determines axial resolution is spatial pulse length. Shorter pulses improve axial resolution, while longer pulses decrease axial resolution.
That pretty much sums up the definition of axial resolution in Ultrasound. In cardiac sonography axial resolution is critical because of the way the structures of the heart are positioned and the size of the structures are at times so small. For example, endocardial definition is very important when calculating the ejection fraction, and it is a result of axial resolution that we are able to see the endocardial definition.
Have any questions, or anything to add to this article? Don’t hesitate to contact me or leave a comment below.
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