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New ultrasound could identify heart disease earlier

New ultrasound could identify heart disease earlier
1st June 2012

A pioneering ultrasound technique could transform the diagnosis and treatment of heart disease.

Researchers from Mount Sinai School of Medicine found that by looking into the efficiency with which blood enters and exits the heart they can identify the early warning signs for heart disease when there are no other indicators.

The new technique is different from other ultrasound methods in that is looks at fluid mechanics rather than muscle mechanics and is, therefore, far more sensitive to changes.

One of the most effective new methods is to inject a stream of tiny bubbles, no larger than a red blood cell, and watch their progress through the heart.

"Not only are you following the path of the blood, but you can actually identify the amount of energy that is being distributed," said Dr Partho Sengupta, paper co-author and director of Cardiac Ultrasound Research at Mount Sinai.

"Like other forms of ultrasound, that means low-cost heart tests using this technology could be performed on a simple outpatient basis."

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