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Endosc Ultrasound. 2019 Mar 12. doi: 10.4103/eus.eus_3_19. [Epub ahead of print]

Evaluation of a new slim radial echoendoscope: A better option for an aging population.

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Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences, GI Unit, Hospital of Imola, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy.


Background and Objectives:

The radial echoendoscope is still widely used for the investigation of abnormalities in the gastrointestinal wall and for stone detection in the extrahepatic biliary tree. Due to aging patient population, EUS is frequently performed in fragile and elderly individuals. We aimed to compare the maneuverability and image quality of a new thin radial echoendoscope to the current one.

Patients and Methods:

This evaluation was conducted at a referral academic EUS center. The new radial echoendoscope has a thinner shaft and distal tube and a shorter bending section compared to the previous one. Patients referred for diagnostic EUS with a radial echoendoscope were enrolled. Indications included pancreaticobiliary disease, esophagogastric abnormalities, and neoplasms and rectal cancer staging.


We enrolled 177 patients (122 pancreaticobiliary, 48 esophagogastric, and 7 rectal cases). Overall, the new echoendoscope performed better than the previous model in terms of maneuverability during esophageal intubation and transition from the duodenal bulb to the second portion. On the other hand, pylorus traversing was comparable to the current radial echoendoscope. No loss in image quality was appreciated at predefined stations (esophagus, stomach, and duodenum) compared to the current model. On the other hand, image penetration depth in tissue harmonic mode was significantly improved with the new echoendoscope.


A new thinner radial echoendoscope showed improved maneuverability compared to the existing version. Image quality was also improved thanks to increased penetration depth in the tissue harmonic mode. We speculate that this new echoendoscope may allow for safer and faster EUS examination, which may prove useful in an aging patient population.


Bending section; EUS; image quality; procedure safety; radial echoendoscope


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