Offering new upgrades that will improve the ability to diagnose cardiovascular disease with ultrasound, Toshiba America Medical Systems, Inc. will showcase the company's newest additions to the Aplio Artida ultrasound system at the American College of Cardiology (ACC) annual meeting in Orlando. Toshiba also will introduce a pediatric package and two new probes, significantly expanding the clinical utility of Artida. Toshiba will be highlighting two new software upgrades that will improve its proprietary 3D and 2D wall motion tracking. With 3D wall motion tracking, for the first time physicians will be able to assess live 3D volume images in one cardiac cycle. The ability to accomplish this in one cardiac cycle will eliminate stitching artifacts, and more importantly, allow physicians to obtain high quality images in patients with arrhythmias and shortness of breath. 2D wall motion tracking of the transmural myocardium will enable physicians to more accurately diagnose heart disease by allowing them to separate out parts of the heart for viewing. For example, physicians will be able to look at only the endocardium or epicardium, in addition to providing views of the entire muscle. Separating these parts of the heart is important because different parts of the muscle move at different speeds — this will enhance visualization. Using Artida's real-time, multi-planar reformatting capabilities, physicians can assess global and regional LV function, including volumetric LV ejection fraction. Arbitrary views of the heart, not available in 2D imaging, are also obtained to help with surgical planning. The 2D/3D wall motion tracking features from Toshiba allow the user to obtain angle-independent, global and regional information about myocardial contraction. It is hoped these features will enable acquisition of additional data that could be of value in echo-guided cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) and in stress echocardiography. "These upgrades are important because the subendocardial layer is sensitive to the effects of myocardial ischemia, and the ability to selectively assess subendocardial function has potential clinical benefits," stated Dr. John Gorcsan, director of Echocardiography, UPMC Cardiovascular Institute. In addition to the 3D and 2D wall motion tracking upgrades, Toshiba is expanding the clinical applications for ultrasound in pediatric care with new a pediatric package and two new probes. The new pediatric probes will provide higher transducer frequencies for pediatrics, resulting in the highest levels of image quality. "As the only imaging vendor with the ability to perform 3D wall motion tracking in a single heart beat, we are continuing to enhance the cardiac capabilities of the Aplio Artida and increase the various types of patients that can be imaged with the system," stated Girish Hagan, vice president, Marketing, Toshiba. "The addition of the pediatric probes will also expand the clinical applications and utilities of the Aplio Artida system to the ever important pediatric market."