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Taiwan J Obstet Gynecol. 2016 Jun;55(3):390-3. doi: 10.1016/j.tjog.2016.04.015.

Quantitative analysis of normal fetal medulla oblongata volume and flow by three-dimensional power Doppler ultrasound.

Author information

1
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Taipei Veterans General Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan.
2
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Taipei Veterans General Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan; Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, National Yang-Ming University, School of Medicine, Taipei, Taiwan.
3
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Taipei Veterans General Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan; Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, National Yang-Ming University, School of Medicine, Taipei, Taiwan; Institute of Clinical Medicine, National Yang-Ming University, Taipei, Taiwan. Electronic address: zachary.joyce@gmail.com.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Assessment of the fetal medulla oblongata volume (MOV) and blood flow might be important in the evaluation of fetal brain growth. We used three-dimensional power Doppler ultrasound (3DPDUS) to assess the fetal MOV and blood flow index in normal gestation. The relationships between these parameters were further analyzed.

METHODS:

We assessed the total volume and blood flow index of the fetal MO in normal pregnancies using a 3DPDUS (Voluson 730 Expert). The true sagittal plane over the fetal occipital area was measured by a 3D transabdominal probe to scan the fetal MO under the power Doppler mode. Then, we quantitatively assessed the total volume of the fetal MOV, mean gray area (MG), vascularization index (VI), and flow index (FI).

RESULTS:

A total of 106 fetuses, ranging from 19 weeks to 39 weeks of gestation, were involved in our study. The volume of the fetal MO was highly positively correlated with gestational age [correlation coefficient (r) = 0.686, p < 0.0001]. The MG was negatively correlated with gestational age [r = -0.544, p < 0.0001). VI and FI showed no significant correlation with gestational age (p = 0.123 and p = 0.219, respectively).

CONCLUSION:

3DPDUS can be used to assess the fetal MOV and blood flow development quantitatively. Our study indicated that fetal MOV and blood flow correlated significantly with the advancement of gestational age. This information may serve as reference data for further studies of the fetal brain and blood flow under abnormal conditions.

KEYWORDS:

fetal brain; flow index (FI); medulla oblongata; power Doppler ultrasound; vascularization index (VI)

PMID:
27343321
DOI:
10.1016/j.tjog.2016.04.015
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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