CONTACT: DR. MICHAEL VANNIER
CONTACT: DR. MONZER ABU-YOUSEF
CONTACT: MICHAEL SONDERGARD
8762 John Pappajohn Pavilion
Iowa City IA 52242
Radiologists developing revolutionary advances in ultrasound technology
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- University of Iowa radiologists are among the first
physicians in the world using a dramatically improved digital ultrasound
imaging system. The revolutionary new system allows clinicians for the
first time to view panoramic images of the body's internal organs, instead
of viewing only a single organ or laboriously piecing together a series
"Now we have a panoramic view in 'real time' (the beating heart,
a moving fetus, or functioning internal organs)," says Dr. Michael
Vannier, director of radiology at the UI Hospitals and Clinics. "This
new system saves examination time and gives a much better image of complex
The "Siescape imaging system" uses a powerful programmable
image processor and a sophisticated new computer software program to enhance
images created on a conventional Siemens ultrasound system."
Ultrasound, as with other radiologic diagnostic systems, is in the midst
of revolutionary change. Traditional film-based ultrasound images are being
replaced by computerized digital images that can be stored on disks. These
disks provide a permanent record of the patient's diagnostic images and
can be taken to different workstations for evaluation by multiple specialists.
Furthermore, computerized ultrasound systems are programmable, meaning
their uses can be expanded as new software is developed.
"The real news for us is not what our Siemens ultrasound machine
does now, but all the advanced applications we can anticipate in the future,"
Vannier says. "We are actively developing new imaging methods and
collaborating with Siemens engineers to expand the capabilities of this
These potential new enhancements include eye-popping three-dimensional
images of the human anatomy. Current ultrasound systems produce two-dimensional
UIHC radiologist Dr. Monzer Abu-Yousef, a specialist in ultrasound technology,
says, "This isn't something that we're going to keep bottled up here
at the university. We will share our radiologic expertise and establish
valuable support and educational linkages with our physician colleagues
throughout Iowa and adjoining states."
Joe Ahladis, vice president of sales and marketing for Siemens Ultrasound,
says that earlier this year, the latest Siemens ultrasound system became
one of the world's first to incorporate internal networking capabilities.
This "instant connectivity" is essential to the UI's burgeoning
teleradiology consultation practice in Iowa and western Illinois, Ahladis
says. Teleradiology permits community physicians at distant sites to electronically
transmit diagnostic images for evaluation by radiologists at UIHC.
"With this new system," Vannier says, "a radiologist
can view images obtained down the hall or 100 miles away, all from a single
workstation. Patients in rural areas no longer need to travel long distances
to urban health centers in order to benefit from the latest technology.
We can bring the technology to them, saving money and better serving out