Ultrasonography.  2018 Jan;37(1):63-70. 10.14366/usg.17009.

Comparison between 3-dimensional cranial ultrasonography and conventional 2-dimensional cranial ultrasonography in neonates: impact on reinterpretation

  • 1Department of Radiology, Seoul National University Hospital, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2Department of Radiology, Chungbuk National University Hospital, Cheongju, Korea. iater@snu.ac.kr
  • 3Department of Radiology, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
  • 4Department of Radiology, Ewha Womans University Mokdong Hospital, Seoul, Korea.
  • 5Department of Radiology, Kyungpook National University Hospital, Daegu, Korea.


The aim of this study was to evaluate impact of 3-dimensional cranial ultrasonography (3DUS) on reinterpretation of cranial ultrasonography images in neonates in comparison with 2-dimensional cranial ultrasonography (2DUS).
We retrospectively enrolled 50 young infants who simultaneously underwent both 2DUS and 3DUS scanning from February to March 2015. Two pediatric radiologists independently reviewed both scans for overall image quality on a 5-point scale. Five features were evaluated in both scans: the presence of germinal matrix hemorrhage (GMH), intraventricular hemorrhage (IVH), ventriculomegaly (VM), abnormality of periventricular echogenicity (PVE), and focal parenchymal lesions (FL). The concordance rate between the two scanning modes was calculated. The confidence level for each finding on a 3-point scale and the scanning time were compared between the two scanning modes. Interobserver agreement was evaluated using kappa statistics.
Both scans demonstrated similar overall image quality in terms of reinterpretation (mean scores for 2DUS and 3DUS, 4.0±0.5 and 4.0±0.7 in reviewer 1, 3.9±0.6 and 4.0±0.8 in reviewer 2, respectively). GMH, IVH, VM, and FL showed perfect concordance, while PVE showed a concordance rate of 91.4% between the two modes by both reviewers. 3DUS was associated with a higher diagnostic confidence in the evaluation of GMH, IVH, and FL than 2DUS (P < 0.05) for both reviewers. For PVE, 3DUS received a significantly higher confidence score than 2DUS from one of the reviewers. The mean scanning time for 2DUS and 3DUS was 92.75 seconds and 36 seconds, respectively. Interobserver agreement for qualitative scoring was almost perfect.
In reinterpretation, 3DUS showed very high concordance with 2DUS and a similar image quality. 3DUS also increased diagnostic confidence for several image findings and significantly decreased scan time.


3-Dimensional ultrasound; Infant, newborn; Infant; Ultrasonography; Brain

MeSH Terms

Infant, Newborn*
Retrospective Studies
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