Imaging and Optimization with the SonoTouch 30: Ultrasound Training Series Part 3
MAY 9, 2014 BY BRIAN GILL
Part 3 of this 8-part ultrasound knobology and applications training series on the Chison SonoTouch 30 ultrasound covers 2D imaging and the many different ways to adjust your image, optimize your image, and how to use the standard controls on the SonoTouch 30.
Because this is a tablet-style ultrasound, many of the features are hidden that can speed up the process of your scan. This is an important part of the series if you’re now learning how to use the SonoTouch 30.
Links to all the videos in this training series is found below the video. For a complete listing of our available training videos, see our Ultrasound Equipment Training page.
Chison SonoTouch 30 Equipment Training video series:
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Transcript to SonoTouch 30 2D Imaging knobology applications training
Now the previous showed us how to enter the patient information and select an application or exam mode. I chose carotid and I still have my patient set up up here. We’ve selected the B mode to get started in B mode. But we also went through these various modes on how to get to color or pulse wave Doppler. Here we’re going to step through the various imaging optimization and parameters to change how your image appears on screen and how to best optimize it.
We’ll start with your gain. Let me get an image up on the screen here. Now I just put some gel on the probe, just so you can get a basic idea of what the various parameters do. Gain obviously changes the gain of the image. You could turn it up and down.
Dynamic Range. Now this shows various levels of gray scale, and how many levels of gray scale throughout the image. It makes the image appear smoother or more contrast and grainy, how you change it. Frequency. This has the number of different frequencies we can choose. This is going to show the center frequency of the probe that I’m using.
Focus Number. We can choose a few different focal zones, depending on the depth. This is at 3.7 centimeters. It’s only going to let me choose two focal zones for this.
Zoom. We can click on Zoom and this is going to show the area of focus. Now I can click on the image, and move that area of focus. If you can see here, the region of interest is right here. And if I click on the image, or press on the image and slide it around, I can change the location of the zoom. I can increase the zoom number, or turn it off completely.
Now also with the TGCs, you can’t slide your finger along the screen to increase the gain in a certain area of the image. I have a basic image shown here to get your best idea of what it can do. If I put up just a basic image here, I can slide to brighten a certain area of the image, or darken in a certain area of the image.
Now we showed needle in a previous movie. You just put this on here and you can change the needle angle. This needle angle, by pushing to left or right, will change it. And this is going to match how your needle comes in. It’s optimized, so the beam will steer here and make your image appear brighter as you slide it in.
Now I’m going to show the other parameters. But before that, you notice there’s no depth control. If I want to change the depth, I can take my finger, slide up and down. Now I’ve got down to 7.4 centimeters. And I slide up, down to 2.5 centimeters. Focal zones work in a similar fashion. I’ve got two focal zones here. Let me change the depth, then you can see it better. I can click and drag my focal zones down, and back up.
Now when you change the focal zones, it won’t change until you click on it and it becomes big. See how the box appears? And it gets big, when I get go, they get small again. So I click Hold, they get big, slide up and down. Another way to do it, to change the focal zones– I’m going to change the depth here. I’m going to bring it back. I can press and hold on a certain area of the image, and my focal zones will automatically go that way.
Let me get rid of the needle here. If you watched the focal zones, here if I push and hold, notice the focal zones change automatically to where I’m pressing on the image. So you don’t necessarily have to drag up and down. If I want to come back and get one focal zone, push and hold, focal position goes wherever my finger is. See it going up and down that way. Now let’s go to the other parameters. Click Others, hit Other Parameters. Now we have a whole new set. Acoustic Power. Scan Wide. High Density. Smooth Edge. Frame Average. i-image, B Color Maps. M Color Map. And various image optimization presets right here.
What we’ll do here, Scan Width changes the width of that angle. High Density is also known as line density. You can turn it on or off. This will use more lines of focus, improve image resolution. It will default a high density. You’ll get better resolution but a slower frame rate. If you need a higher frame rate, High Density is of the things you can do to increase the frame rate at the cost of resolution. Smooth will smooth out your image.
Edge is for edge enhancement. Frame Average will appear to smooth out the image. It will take a number frames. This is not averaging at all. It’s at one. You can increase to average three frames and the machine will try and improve the image based on putting three frames together, and averaging those together and increasing the contrast of the high echoes and the low echoes. I-image is also an image improvement. This takes a number of parameters, and is a quick way that it tries to improve a number of different parameters to improve your image.
You can just select Various, and see how it improves the image. Now along with dynamic range, you often need to change your gray scale. And that’s over here. You’ll click on this and you can click and drag. Increase your dark or lights. Various. This is your gamma curve here. And you can save the preset. This is going to increase the brights of your whites, or lower your darks. You can see here how your gray scale changes. We have some darks as bright. This is not something most people mess with. Because you can see, it can really mess up your image. But as you change the dynamic range, you’ll often want to change your gray scale. Go back.
There are various presets. This goes off in a straight line. I’ll choose that. OK, down here, CPD stands for compound imaging. CPD is used to improve image quality. It uses multiple lines of sight instead of echoes coming perpendicular to the probe. This will send the echoes in multiple lines of sight through the probe. You could see how the image quality is changed a great deal just by hitting Compound Imaging. SRA is your speckle reduction technology.
Now you need to turn off Compound in order to turn off the speckle reduction imaging. So I could turn it on and off here. But if I have Compound on, it automatically goes with both. THI stands for tissue harmonics imaging. Probably won’t use it very often with the linear probe. MB is Multi-Beam, which some will confuse with compound imaging. It’s not the same technology. MB uses a software algorithm to try and increase line density within the image. This is a very common feature used by most ultrasounds so they can tell you that it has a higher channel count than what is actually done in the hardware.
So MBs, as multi-plexing, if it’s a 64 channel system, they might say it’s 128 or 256 channels, when actually it’s just software doing that. It is very common feature. Most don’t allow you to change whether it’s on or off. This does help you improve the image quality. OK, coming along the bottom, we have our Freeze to stop the image, and we’ll automatically get our Cine Review, which we’ll get to in the later part. B Mode. I’m going to click here. And we have our PW4B for our quad screen. We’re going to touch it each time to get my new live image. When I want to go to dual mode, I’m going to hit 2B. It will have the same function. I’m just going to keep pushing this again until I get the image that I want, and then I would hit Freeze.