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Journal: Ultrasound (Leeds, England)


This study compared fetal response to musical stimuli applied intravaginally (intravaginal music [IVM]) with application via emitters placed on the mother’s abdomen (abdominal music [ABM]). Responses were quantified by recording facial movements identified on 3D/4D ultrasound. One hundred and six normal pregnancies between 14 and 39 weeks of gestation were randomized to 3D/4D ultrasound with: (a) ABM with standard headphones (flute monody at 98.6 dB); (b) IVM with a specially designed device emitting the same monody at 53.7 dB; or © intravaginal vibration (IVV; 125 Hz) at 68 dB with the same device. Facial movements were quantified at baseline, during stimulation, and for 5 minutes after stimulation was discontinued. In fetuses at a gestational age of >16 weeks, IVM-elicited mouthing (MT) and tongue expulsion (TE) in 86.7% and 46.6% of fetuses, respectively, with significant differences when compared with ABM and IVV (p = 0.002 and p = 0.004, respectively). There were no changes from baseline in ABM and IVV. TE occurred ≥5 times in 5 minutes in 13.3% with IVM. IVM was related with higher occurrence of MT (odds ratio = 10.980; 95% confidence interval = 3.105-47.546) and TE (odds ratio = 10.943; 95% confidence interval = 2.568-77.037). The frequency of TE with IVM increased significantly with gestational age (p = 0.024). Fetuses at 16-39 weeks of gestation respond to intravaginally emitted music with repetitive MT and TE movements not observed with ABM or IVV. Our findings suggest that neural pathways participating in the auditory-motor system are developed as early as gestational week 16. These findings might contribute to diagnostic methods for prenatal hearing screening, and research into fetal neurological stimulation.

Concepts: Pregnancy, Embryo, Prenatal development, Fetus, Uterus, Obstetrics, Gestation, Gestational age


Ultrasound estimation of fetal weight is a highly influential factor in antenatal management, guiding both the timing and mode of delivery of a pregnancy. Although substantial research has investigated the most accurate ultrasound formula for calculating estimated fetal weight, current evidence indicates significant error levels. The aim of this systematic review was to identify the most accurate method, whilst identifying sources of inaccuracy in order to facilitate recommendations for future practice. Seven studies met the inclusion criteria and 11 different formulae were assessed; ultrasound calculation of fetal weight was most commonly overestimated. The Hadlock A formula produced the most accurate results, with the lowest levels of random error. Methods incorporating just two measurement parameters were inconsistent, producing large random errors across multiple studies. Key sources of inaccuracy included difficulties obtaining accurate fetal measurements in late gestation; the remainder were operator dependent, including lack of experience and insufficient training and audit. The accuracy of ultrasound estimated fetal weight has improved in the last decade, though a lack of consistency remains evident. National implementation of a rigorous audit programme would likely improve accuracy further, and increase the confidence and clinical value of the method.

Concepts: Pregnancy, Critical thinking, Mathematics, Measurement, Obstetrics, Error, Normal distribution, Observational error


The efficacy of preclinical ultrasound at providing a quantitative assessment of mouse models of vascular disease is relatively unknown. In this study, preclinical ultrasound was used in combination with a semi-automatic image processing method to track arterial distension alterations in mouse models of abdominal aortic aneurysm and atherosclerosis.


It is important to understand the uncertainty in fetal measurements when using them in the management of pregnancy. The aim of this essay is to provide background on errors and uncertainty, describing error sources and their potential impact, with guidance on improving accuracy. Errors can be systematic or random, arising from equipment, image plane selection, measurement method and caliper placement and influenced by image quality, training and experience. The uncertainty in measurements is larger than clinically significant differences in fetal size and growth. Errors can be reduced by implementing equipment acceptance testing, written procedures, training and audit.


Ultrasound estimated fetal weight is increasingly being used in the monitoring of fetal growth. Differences between estimated fetal weight formulae, curves and measurement methods could lead to significant differences in results. The aim of this study was to investigate the potential impact of these differences on estimated fetal weight and its use in monitoring fetal growth, both by modelling and by analysis of ultrasound scan data.


The aims of this study were: (1) Determine the effect on student ultrasound scanning skills using a lower extremity venous ultrasound phantom in addition to standard teaching methods of didactic lecture and scanning live volunteers and (2) Determine the effect of using a lower extremity venous ultrasound phantom in addition to standard teaching methods of didactic lecture and scanning live volunteers on student confidence levels in performing the lower extremity venous ultrasound examination.


Optimising abdominal aortic aneurysm surveillance intervals will improve current surveillance programmes. To the author’s knowledge, no known study has exclusively asked patient opinion with regards to their surveillance interval. The aim of this study was to therefore determine a patient’s perspective of their optimal intervals, encouraging shared decision-making and creating a patient-focused service.


Chronic liver disease is a public health burden worldwide. Portal hypertension is a major portosystemic abnormality in chronic liver disease. This study aimed to determine the main, right, and the left portal vein diameter in patients with chronic liver disease.


Social media has become an integral part of our daily life with 38 million users in the UK alone and the average user being logged-in for 135 minutes daily. Social media is increasingly used to disseminate learning in a variety of fields including medicine.


Ultrasound is the modality of choice in the evaluation of neonates and young children with suspected adrenal lesions including adrenal haemorrhage and congenital adrenal hyperplasia. It is also the initial imaging modality in children presenting with an upper abdominal mass, which may be adrenal in origin. Topic discussion: This paper shows adrenal anatomy and demonstrates how the sonographic features change with age. It reviews the imaging features of congenital adrenal lesions, as well as benign and malignant conditions affecting the adrenal gland in childhood. Discussion and Conclusion: Ultrasound is a useful primary imaging modality in the assessment of the adrenal gland in children. Knowledge of the changes of the adrenal gland with age is important when assessing the adrenal gland. Ultrasound is also useful for assessing abdominal masses. However, it cannot differentiate adrenal masses, therefore correlation with biochemical findings, multimodality imaging, and histology is usually required.