the demand for easy portability
Medical equipment manufacturers are improving the designs and
functionality to meet clinical and operational challenges in the
ever-increasing effort to improve diagnoses, advance healthcare and save
more lives. Middle East Health looks at a six ultrasound units
which offer both portability and high performance.
The wide applicability of ultrasound in areas such as radiology,
abdominal medicine, obstetrics, vascular and cardiac medicine alongside
the demand from clinicians for smaller, higher performing systems is
leading a new wave in the development of ultrasound devices that are
smaller and more portable enabling clinicians to easily transport the
units between departments and even take them on the road.
Zonare – z.one
has developed the z.one convertible ultrasound system which provides the
flexibility to instantly convert from a full-featured, cart-based system
to a compact unit with high-resolution and full exam capabilities.
Zonare says that whether the clinician is dealing with a routine exam in
radiology or a trauma case in the ER, z.one can be instantly adapted to
changing patient and exam needs. The flexibility of the z.one platform
is designed to provide clinical solutions for a wide variety of imaging
needs in general imaging, obstetrics, gynaecology, vascular and other
emerging ultrasound applications.
"We have developed a next generation ultrasound platform, based
primarily on software technology, which provides the clinician with far
greater flexibility than traditional ultrasound systems," said Donald
Southard, president and CEO of Zonare Medical Systems.
"This architecture, coupled with our proprietary Zone Sonography
technology, has allowed us to bring the first convertible ultrasound
platform to the industry with high performance image quality at a
significant price to value ratio."
Zonare claim that their revolutionary approach behind Zone Sonography
will change the way clinicians look at medical ultrasound. With
conventional ultrasound systems, information is obtained by sending and
receiving hundreds of narrow "lines" to form an image. Zone Sonography,
on the other hand, acquires imaging information in a relatively few
By gathering these large amounts of data very quickly – in much the same
way that a photographic flash blankets areas – many of the physical
limitations which previously restricted ultrasound performance are no
longer factors. Additionally, instead of handling image acquisition and
processing in customdesigned hardware – as conventional ultrasound
systems do – Zone Sonography is largely implemented in software, on both
the front and the back ends.
means the performance of a Zone Sonographybased system is not tied to
the speed of sound propagation, but rather to processor speed – a much
faster and ever-expanding technology. By combining these advances, Zone
Sonography is revolutionising ultrasound, enablingpremium image quality
in a portable system.
Edward Lyons, MD, professor of radiology, Obs- Gyn and anatomy,
University of Manitoba Health Services Center, Winnipeg, Canada, said:
"I believe the architecture behind Zone Sonography will add tremendous
flexibility and value to the clinical environment. It provides the same
image quality and functionality as the traditional 400- pound ultrasound
cart system while remaining completely portable.
“This is a tremendous advantage for a wide variety of imaging
departments." Peter Jabeck, administrative director, Diagnostic Imaging
for Mercy Hospital and Medical Center in Chicago, US, said: “The main
reason we bought the z.one system was for its flexibility, compact size
Now we have the ability to use one system for several of our off-site
facilities without having to transport a heavy system around. Add this
benefit to the z.one system’s scanning capabilities, plus images that
are comparable to more expensive systems, and we have a tremendous asset
in providing excellent patient care.”
For more information visit:
Philips Medical Systems –
Medical System’s latest ultrasound offering is the HD11 which offers
powerful options and portability.
The HD11 system is up to 56% lighter than any system in its class. It
offers excellent mobility and features advanced ergonomics to ease
stress on the user.
The HD11 system’s portability is enhanced with front and rear handles
and clear sightlines for users of all sizes. Philips points out that
even the most challenging patients can take advantage of advanced
ultrasound imaging capabilities without having to be moved.
The compact digital architecture supports broadband beamforming with
expanded dynamic range, full software tuning and sub-millimetre digital
focus, while computed signal processing uses the diagnostic information
within the broadband digital signal without sacrificing temporal
SonoCT imaging processes up to nine lines of sight for more diagnostic
information, while XRES adaptive technology performs 350 million
calculations per frame for superb resolution. Integrated automation
tools make it easy to achieve the best 2D, Doppler or 4D image with
The HD11 brings 3D/4D imaging into the mainstream by delivering it on a
platform that is relatively affordable. “It is not high end in terms of
price, but is high end in terms of capability,” Walter van Kuijen,
general manager multi-country region and vice president Philips Medical
Systems, told Middle East Health earlier this year.
A suite of advanced imaging modes delivers diagnostic power, for
complete exam protocols, with incredible system responsiveness. Data
management capabilities allow flexible recording, archiving, editing and
even exam reports with embedded images.
The powerful HD11 platform enables clinicians to customise the system to
suit their clinical environment, with options ranging from stress echo
to panoramic imaging and contrast.
It also allows more clinicians to experience the growing clinical
advantages of 3D/4D imaging as well as specialised requirements for
breast, transesophageal, paediatric, vascular, musculoskeletal and more.
The unit enables a more detailed view of foetal heart valves and wall
motion to aid in detecting anomalies during routine obstetrical exams.
The HD11 system supports more than 20 transducers, including many from
the Explora line, for flexibility in meeting most clinical needs.
- The control panel and monitor move up and down, supporting users of
all heights and allowing them to alter scanning between standing and
- The rotating control panel and monitor, as well as logically grouped
mode and measurement keys, enable users to position controls where
they’re most accessible, reducing extended reaching that strains
- Up to five available ports reduce bending to switch out transducers.
- Advanced circuitry helps keep users and patients more comfortable by
promoting a quiet and cool scanning environment.
- The integrated footrest allows correct posture, reducing stress on the
For more information visit
Siemens Medical Solutions
Medical Solution’s all digital G40 ultrasound unit, the newest member of
the Siemens ultrasound family, combines best-inclass image quality,
workflow advancement and colour Doppler capabilities to meet daily
clinical needs in a variety of clinical settings, including general
imaging, obstetrics-gynaecology and internal medicine. Siemens showed
off the unit at the 53rd annual clinical meeting of the American College
of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (ACOG) in May in San Francisco,
California. In late May the company began shipping the product
The G40 system’s intuitive user interface enables clinicians and
sonographers to offer comprehensive, diagnostic ultrasound exams to more
patients in less time. The compact system with built-in cable management
allows for easy transportation between exam rooms or suites.
Additionally, with the DIMAQ-IP integrated workstation and built-in CD
read/write drive, small private practices and hospital ultrasound
departments alike can cost-effectively archive patient exam data. The
embedded connectivity solutions on the G40 system allow simple
integration into DICOM-enabled networks and PC-based workstations.
G40 system is the latest example of how Siemens is integrating bestin-
class imaging technology and clinical workflow advancements into high
value systems that are responsive to clinicians’ needs,” explained Klaus
Hambüchen, head of the Siemens Medical Solutions Ultrasound Division. “A
performance-driven, colour Doppler ultrasound solution, the
ultra-portable G40 system, brings these comprehensive clinical
capabilities to practices and clinics of every size and case load.”
The G40 system sets a new standard in compact, mobile ultrasound with
best-in-class imaging performance including colour Doppler and pulsewave
Doppler capabilities. Phased array technology also expands clinical
capabilities to include cardiac survey and small-footprint abdominal
imaging. Other advances include Virtual Format Imaging (VFI), which
offers a variety of linear, trapezoidal and steered two-dimensional
imaging formats. In addition, parallel B-mode and colour signal
processing provides higher frame rates and a better colour performance.
The open system architecture enables easy integration of advanced
capabilities, such as phase inversion Tissue Harmonic Imaging (THI),
ultimately helping customers make the most of their equipment
investment. Future capabilities are expected to include
three-dimensional imaging, TGO tissue greyscale optimisation technology
and SynAps synthetic aperture technology, which improves penetration and
For more information visit:
GE Medical Systems –
the LOGIQ Book
The LOGIQ Book provides complete ultrasound capabilities in a
hand-carried, battery-powered scanner about the size of a laptop
computer. Weighing only 4.5 kilogrammes and sized to fit into a
briefcase or backpack, the LOGIQ Book enables doctors to provide
diagnostic ultrasound to patients any time and in virtually any
LOGIQ Book portable ultrasound system is the newest member of the LOGIQ
family of ultrasound scanners. Like its full-size relatives – LOGIQ 9,
LOGIQ 7 and LOGIQ 5 – the LOGIQ Book is based on GE’s advanced TruScan
architecture. It delivers the same
functionality, raw data processing
and archival options found on all LOGIQ scanners, with the advantage of
being ultra portable.
“The LOGIQ Book removes the geographic and environmental barriers to
ultrasound,” said Omar Ishrak, president and CEO of GE Medical Systems
Global Ultrasound business. “This technology empowers healthcare
practitioners to deploy the diagnostic benefits of ultrasound throughout
the healthcare facility and beyond.”
- Automatic optimisation minimises operator dependent variability to
improve image quality, examination consistency and overall productivity
- Easy3D makes out-ofplane imaging simple
- Calculation packages for obs-gyn, vascular, renal and real-time auto
- Image archive stores over 4,000 images or cine loops
- Integrated 10.3-inch, high-resolution, colour LCD for easy viewing and
accurate diagnostic interpretation
- Images are stored with raw data allowing the application of real-time
scanning techniques to stored images
- Data is stored in a DICOM format that enables images and information
to be shared with other scanners, workstations and archives.
recently introduced the MicroMaxx ultrasound system, the company's third
generation hand-carried product, weighing less than 3.8 kilogrammes and
the size of a laptop computer. The unit delivers image resolution and
performance comparable to conventional cart-based ultrasound systems
weighing over 100kg.
The United States-headquartered Sonosite with offices in Europe and
China is considered a world leader in hand-carried ultrasound. SonoSite
has developed user-friendly, technologically advanced products designed
from the groundup, not adapted from existing technologies. The company's
proprietary ‘Chip Fusion’ technology integrates digital signal
processing and multiple ultrasound functions into a custom ASIC
(Application Specific Integrated Circuit) microchip, resulting in high
performance in a less costly, powerful handcarried unit.
The MicroMaxx system and its transducers are designed to withstand the
rogh and tumble of the real world, including being dropped onto a hard
surface and continuing to function. Another added benefit is the
standard fiveyear warranty on every MicroMaxx unit.
"Hand-carried echocardiography has become central in my clinical
practice for making and confirming diagnostic decisions and the
MicroMaxx system is a major step forward," said Catherine Otto, MD,
professor of medicine and director, Cardiology Fellowship Programs,
University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle. "The image
resolution and colour Doppler are superb and something I did not expect
to find in a hand-carried unit. The MicroMaxx is easy to use with
simple, clear controls. Getting comfortable with this sophisticated
instrument took me less than 10 minutes."
The new broadband digital beamformer supports extended bandwidth
transducers for scanning in a wide range of clinical applications.
Additionally, the MicroMaxx system is ready for scanning in seconds and
can operate on battery power for up to four hours. New transducers being
introduced with the MicroMaxx system include:
- HFL 38 /13-6 linear transducer for breast, small parts, vascular, IMT
and nerve imaging;
- P17/5-1 phased array transducer for abdominal, cardiac and obstetrical
- C60e/5-2 curved array transducer for abdominal, obstetrical and
gynecological scanning; and
- TEE/8-3 transducer for transoesophageal echocardiography scanning.
The MicroMaxx system also offers the option of embedded SonoCalc IMT
software for the early detection and management of cardiovascular
disease. IMT, or Intima Media Thickness, refers to the measurement of
the interior lining of the common carotid artery. This effective
measurement can detect sub-clinical atherosclerosis (very early stages
of disease), long before any significant atherosclerotic plaque
For more information visit:
Medison – SonoAce PICO
a South Korean based company, manufactures the SonoAce PICO – a
full-featured digital colour ultrasound system with virtually all the
imaging capabilities you would expect from a cart-based system with the
added benefit of being fully portable.
The compact digital package is designed for physicians practicing in
obsgyn, internal medicine and radiology and operates wherever there is a
power point. The SonoAce PICO is about the size of a regular briefcase
and has several innovative technical features including digital
beamforming and tissue harmonic imaging technologies, as well as
Spectral, Colour and Pulse Wave Doppler. The unit has Freehand 3D for
optimal 2D and 3D images in colour and black and white.
The unit is based on the Linux Operating System and is network enabled.
System maintenance and upgrades can all be performed through a remote
service via an Internet connection.
SonoAce PICO comes installed with Medison’s patented SonoView Lite image
management software for easy and intuitive image filing and management.
The unit also has a USB port to connect peripheral devices such as a CD/RW
drive for increased storage in addition to the already installed high
capacity hard drive.
The system comes with a broad range of probes making it applicable to a
wide field of applications.
For more information visit: