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Srce i krvni sudovi
2012, vol. 31, iss. 4, pp. 258-262
article language: Serbian
document type: Review Paper

Real time three-dimensional echocardiography: The importance of the third dimension in everyday clinical practice
aKlinički centar Srbije, Klinika za kardiologiju, Beograd + Univerzitet u Beogradu, Medicinski fakultet, Beograd
bKlinički centar Srbije, Klinika za kardiologiju, Beograd



Over the past four decades, echocardiography, in addition to electrocardiography, became a primary diagnostic tool in cardiology. At the same time by the development of microprocessors and computers technology, diagnostic capabilities of echocardiography have been increased exponentially. Although conventional echocardiography contributed significantly to the understanding of the morphology and function of the heart, the display is limited in two dimensions, which requires mental reconstruction of the third dimension by the sonographer. That is why the concept of three-dimensional display (3D) was accepted as a natural evolution of the technology. During the last decade there is the evident development of 3D echocardiography from subsequent slow (off-line) reconstruction of cardiac structures to the real time volume imaging (RT3D). The main proven advantage of this technique is the improved accuracy of echocardiographic assessment of volume and mass of the heart cavities, which is achieved by eliminating the need for geometric models and errors caused by short sections. Another advantage of RT3D recording is unique, realistic and comprehensive view of overall cardiac valvular and congenital anomalies, which proved to be extremely useful in guiding percutaneous procedures and intraoperative surgical interventions. However, the inclusion of 3D echocardiography in clinical practice, requires the understanding of the technical principles and a systematic approach to the acquisition and analysis of images. It also requires an understanding of spatial anatomy and hemodynamics, knowledge of the limitations of these methods and the interpretation of findings with careful clinical examination.


3D-echocardiography; indications


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