Aims and objectives
One of the advantages of 3D ultrasound is the possibility to have the whole breast scanned by technicians with batch or remote reporting by a dedicated breast radiologist [1,2].
feedback on concurrent focal abnormalities (e.g.
palpable lesions) is lost.
We therefore aimed to develop skin markers for 3D ultrasound that can be used for marking focal abnormalities without disturbing the interpretation of the 3D ultrasound dataset.
Methods and materials
Markers were moldedusing amold that was designed and 3D printed in a rubber-like material,
allowing for removal of the resulting markers. Spherical,
circular,anddisk-shaped variants were molded in different sizes (Figure 1).
The material usedfor the markerisEcoFlex-Gel® (Macungie,
Pennsylvania USA),which is a commercially availableRoom Temperature Curing (RTC)silicon.Thissilicon proved suitable for US imaging andcan also beusedasphantom material.
After mixing the twocomponentsthe silicon mixture is poured into the mold and is left to cure for two hours in a vacuum chamber for air removal.When the...
Production and application:
Production complexity of the silicon markers is low.
Curing time allowed for effective degassing of the silicon.
The markers are safe and easily applied to the skin.
Adhesion is sufficient to prevent dislocation during the 3D ultrasound acquisition,
multiple sequential acquisitions did not dislocate the marker.
Markers are clearly visible at skin level,
presenting as small black circles in the coronal plane(Figure 3).
In thetransversal and reconstructed sagittal planemarker presence is more subtle (Figure 4 and5).There is only minimal shadowing...
easy producible RTC silicon markers can be used for lesion marking in 3D ultrasound without affecting image interpretability.
 Van Zelst,
Multiplanar reconstructions of 3D automated breast ultrasound improve lesion differentiation by radiologists.
Improved breast cancer detection in asymptomatic women using 3D-automated breast ultrasound in mammographically dense breasts.
Acoustic characterization of polyvinyl chloride and self-healing silicone as phantom materials.