Development of an ultra-portable echo device connected to USB port

Yoshifumi Saijo, Shin Ichi Nitta, Kazuto Kobayashi, Hitoshi Arai, Yukiko Nemoto

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


In practical cardiology, a stethoscope based auscultation has been used to reveal the patient's clinical status. Recently, several hand-held echo devices are going on market and they are expected to play a role as "visible" auscultation instead of stethoscope. We have developed a portable and inexpensive echo device which can be used for screening of cardiac function. Two single element transducers were attached 180° apart to a rotor with 14-mm diameter. The mechanical scanner, integrated circuits for transmitting and receiving ultrasonic signals and an A/D converter were encapsulated in a 150×40 mm probe weighing 200 g. The scan was started and the image was displayed on a Windows based personal computer (PC) as soon as the probe was connected to USB 2.0 port of the PC. The central frequency was available between 2.5 and 7.5 MHz, the image depth was 15 cm and the frame rate was 30/s. The estimated price of this ultra-portable ultrasound is about 3000 US$ with software. For 69 cardiac patients with informed consent, image quality was compared with those obtained with basic range diagnostic echo machines. Left ventricular ejection fraction (EF) derived from normal M-mode image of standard machines (EFm) were compared with visual EF of the ultra-portable ultrasound device (EFv). The image quality was comparable to the basic range diagnostic echo machines although short axis view of aortic root was not clearly visualized because the probe was too large for intercostal approach. EFv agreed well with EFm. The ultra-portable ultrasound may provide useful information on screening and health care.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)699-703
Number of pages5
Issue number1-9
Publication statusPublished - 2004 Apr
EventProceedings of Ultrasonics International 2003 - Granada, Spain
Duration: 2003 Jun 302003 Jul 3


  • Echography
  • Personal computer
  • Portable
  • USB 2.0

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics


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