Three-dimensional endoluminal ultrasound: a new method for the evaluation of gastrointestinal tumors


  • M. Huenerbein
  • B.M. Ghadimi
  • S. Gretschel
  • P.M. Schlag


  • Abdominal Imaging


  • Abdom Imaging 24 (5): 445-448


  • Background: The purpose of the present study was to evaluate the feasibility of three-dimensional endoluminal ultrasound of gastrointestinal tumors. Methods: Sixteen patients with esophageal, gastric, or colorectal tumors underwent endoscopic ultrasound. Three-dimensional ultrasound data were obtained from multiple serial images of a miniprobe (360°, 12.5 MHz) and processed on a PC-based 3D workstation. Results: Adequate three-dimensional ultrasound scans were obtained in eight patients with esophageal cancer and five patients with colorectal cancer. Three-dimensional image processing enabled visualization of the data as a multiplanar display or as a life-like three-dimensional view. The availability of arbitrary scan planes improved the assessment of local tumor spread and the spatial relation of the tumor to relevant adjacent structures (e.g., major vessels). Three-dimensional presentations provided realistic views of the anatomy and facilitated the interpretation of the ultrasound images. Conclusions: Three-dimensional display and the ability to review endoluminal ultrasound data interactively may improve the staging of gastrointestinal tumors. These preliminary data encourage further evaluation of this technique.