Evaluation of ultrasound point shear wave elastography reliability in an elasticity phantom
Salahaden R Sultan1 , Amer Alghamdi2, Rawan Abdeen1, Fahad Almutairy1
1Department of Diagnostic Radiology, Faculty of Applied Medical Sciences, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
2Department of Diagnostic Radiology, King Fahad Hospital., Al-Baha, Saudi Arabia
Corresponding Author: Salahaden R Sultan ,Tel: +96656663643, Fax: +96656663643, Email: srsultan@kau.edu.sa
Received: May 22, 2021;  Accepted: July 31, 2021.  Published online: July 31, 2021.
To date there is a limited number of studies that specifically address the reliability of ultrasound point shear wave elastography (pSWE). Therefore, the aim of the present study was to assess the reproducibility of ultrasound pSWE within and between operators using two ultrasound scanners.
iU22 and EPIQ7 ultrasound scanners were used to assess the reliability of pSWE measurements of lesions at a depth of 3.5 cm in an elasticity phantom using curvilinear 5-1MHz transducer. Intra and inter-operator, inter-scanner reproducibility of pSWE was assessed using Intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC). Bland-Altman plot was used to establish bias and limit of agreement between measurements. The accuracy of pSWE from manufacturer values was determined using one-sample t-test
Intra-operator agreement was excellent with Intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) >0.90. Bias in measurements for operator A was -0.36±3.13 kPa (limit of agreement (LoA): -6.47 – 5.75), and for operator B was -1.97 kPa (LoA: -10.25 – 14.21). Inter-operator agreement was excellent with ICC values of 0.95. Bias in measurements between operators was -0.42±5 kPa (LoA: -10.24 – 9.38). Inter-scanner agreement between EPIQ7 and iU22 was excellent with ICC values of 0.96. Bias in measurements between scanners was 1.74±4.44 kPa (LoA: -6.95 – 10.45). There were significant overestimation for L I (17.75%) and L II (31.14%) and underestimation for L III (-15.28%) and L VI (-98%) from the values reported by the phantom manufacture.
Phantom ultrasound pSWE is reproducible within and between operators, and between Philips ultrasound scanners; further studies using different ultrasound systems and transducers are required.
Keywords: Ultrasound; Point-shear elastography; Elasticity phantom
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