SoftVueTM System

Soft Vue
SoftVue is a true innovation and as the first of its kind, it introduces a new way of imaging the breast through the sophisticated capture and treatment of sound signals. SoftVue has received FDA clearance for diagnostic imaging purposes and is not intended for use as a replacement for screening mammography.

The SoftVue Procedure

system3During the SoftVue procedure, the technologist assists the patient to lie prone with her breast suspended in a warm water reservoir. Centering the breast is performed accurately and simply, aided by real-time camera guidance. A uniquely-designed comfort-pad and soft membrane layer are integrated with the table surface for patient comfort during the exam.
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  • No pain or compression is experienced by the patient
  • The system is designed to accommodate all breast sizes
  • At 1-2 minutes per breast, the exam is fast
  • The membrane is flexible and pliant, contouring to the chest wall
  • Posterior tissue relaxes into the transducer ring, allowing chest wall and axillary tail imaging

axillary tail

Novel Ultrasound Tomography Design

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By introducing a singularly unique approach in transducer design, SoftVue incorporates over 2000 transducer elements within a uniform ring configuration. Multi-parameter sound characteristics of reflection, sound speed, and attenuation are collected and retained in a circumferential, tomographic series analyzed by proprietary algorithms, providing volumetric measurements.

    • Each transducer element emits ultrasound signals in a sequenced 360° circular array surrounding the entire breast, scanning automatically from the chest wall to the nipple

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  • Image acquisition is conducted in 2mm increments
  • Compound imaging captures not only reflection echoes that define anatomic detail, but also transmission signals passing through the breast that are measured and quantified
  • A coronal cross-section image set is presented of the entire breast, and can be displayed in stacked or tile format for interpretation and comparison with other breast imaging studies

 

Traditional hand-held ultrasound and automated breast ultrasound systems obtain only reflected echoes returning in the direction of the linear transducer. By contrast, SoftVue captures reflection echoes from all directions around the breast and gathers transmitted signals coming through the breast, something no other ultrasound system, currently available, can do.

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  • Sound speed and attenuation properties, deduced from signals transmitted through the breast, are essential in providing breast tissue characterization for evaluating tissue stiffness and density
  • Research has shown increased sound speed and attenuation to be associated with breast cancer.1 Greater breast density, a known factor for an increase in breast cancer risk, has shown to exhibit increased sound speed as well2

homepage2Ongoing research for future SoftVue applications includes evaluating the elastic properties of tumors and applying proprietary curved ray tomography to generate images based on through-transmission data. Our vision for SoftVue moves beyond anything that has been introduced before by combining the sound properties of reflection, speed, and attenuation.

1 Ranger, B., Littrup, P. J., Duric, N., Chandiwala-Mody, P., Li, C., Schmidt, S., &Lupinacci, J. (2012). Breast Ultrasound Tomography Versus MRI for Clinical Display of Anatomy and Tumor Rendering: Preliminary Results. American Journal of Roentgenology, 198(1), 233-239.

2 Duric, N., Boyd, N., Littrup, P., Sak, M., Myc, L., Li, C., …& Albrecht, T. (2013). Breast density measurements with ultrasound tomography: A comparison with film and digital mammography. Medical physics, 40, 013501.

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