Image qualities of fundamental, tissue-harmonic, fundamental compound, and tissue-harmonic compound sonography for evaluating focal hepatic lesions were compared. Two radiologists, blinded to the type of techniques and to the final diagnosis, independently evaluated 384 images of 96 hepatic lesions: hemangiomas (n=35), hepatic cystic lesions (n=28), cirrhosis-related nodules (n=22), focal nodular hyperplasia (n=1), and metastases (n=10). All images were graded in terms of lesion conspicuity, margin sharpness, and overall image quality using a four- or five-point scale. In the cases of cystic lesions, posterior acoustic enhancement and internal artifacts were also analyzed. A Friedman test was used for multiple statistical comparisons of the four techniques for all parameters. Compound imaging was significantly superior to fundamental imaging regarding lesion conspicuity, margin sharpness, and overall quality (P<.05). For posterior enhancement and internal artifacts within the cyst, harmonic ultrasonography (US) was significantly better than fundamental US (P<.05). For evaluating focal hepatic lesions on US, compound imaging provided better lesion conspicuity, better margin sharpness, and better overall image quality than fundamental imaging did. Tissue harmonic imaging also provided better posterior enhancement and fewer internal artifacts of the cyst than fundamental imaging.
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Published online: January 22, 2007
© 2007 Published by Elsevier Inc.