Ultra-High Frequency Ultrasound, A Promising Diagnostic Technique: Review of the Literature and Single-Center Experience

Rossana, Izzetti, Saverio, Vitali, Giacomo, Aringhieri, Marco, Nisi, Teresa, Oranges, Valentina, Dini, Francesco, Ferro, Chiara, Baldini, Marco, Romanelli, Davide, Caramella, Mario, Gabriele

Canadian Association of Radiologists Journal |

Objectives: Ultra-high frequency ultrasonography (UHFUS) is a recently introduced diagnostic technique which finds several applications in diverse clinical fields. The range of frequencies between 30 and 100 MHz allows for high spatial resolution imaging of superficial structures, making this technique suitable for the imaging of skin, blood vessels, musculoskeletal anatomy, oral mucosa, and small parts. However, the current clinical applications of UHFUS have never been analyzed in a consistent multidisciplinary manner. The aim of this study is to revise and discuss the current applications of UHFUS in different aspects of research and clinical practice, as well as to provide some examples of the current work-in-progress carried out in our center. Materials and Methods: A literature search was performed in order to retrieve articles reporting the applications of UHFUS both in research and in clinical settings. Inclusion criteria were the use of frequencies above 30 MHz and study design conducted in vivo on human subjects. Results: In total 66 articles were retrieved. The majority of the articles focused on dermatological and vascular applications, although musculoskeletal and intraoral applications are emerging fields of use. We also describe our experience in the use of UHFUS as a valuable diagnostic support in the fields of dermatology, rheumatology, oral medicine, and musculoskeletal anatomy. Conclusion: Ultra-high frequency ultrasonography application involves an increasing number of medical fields. The high spatial resolution and the superb image quality achievable allow to foresee a wider use of this novel technique, which has the potential to bring innovation in diagnostic imaging.