By Kate Madden Yee, AuntMinnie.com staff writer
November 12, 2013

What's the most effective way to treat uterine fibroids? Can sonography help clinicians assess appendices that are borderline in terms of size for appendicitis? And does ultrasound have prognostic value for assessing muscle strain injuries? These questions and many more will be addressed at the upcoming RSNA 2013 in Chicago.

On Sunday, December 1, RSNA attendees can check out a scientific session all about breast ultrasound -- for both cancer diagnosis and screening (10:45 a.m.-12:15 p.m., SSA01, Arie Crown Theater). There's also a session on physics research that ranges from exploring the use of shear-wave elastography to assess tendon damage to using dynamic contrast-enhanced ultrasound to evaluate tumor vasculature (10:45 a.m.-12:15 p.m., SSA21, Room S405AB).

Sunday afternoon, the RSNA is offering a number of refresher courses, including one focused on renal ultrasound and Doppler (2:00 p.m.-3:30 p.m., RC110, Room E450B) and another concentrated on techniques for interventional sonography and thermal ablation (2:00 p.m.-3:30 p.m., RC152, Room E264).

Monday will bring even more refresher courses, from first-trimester ultrasound (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m., RC210, Room S405AB) to a master class in musculoskeletal ultrasound (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m., RC231, Room E258). Also that morning, attendees can explore ultrasound-guided interventional breast procedures (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m., RC252, Room E264).

On Tuesday, December 3, don't miss a controversy session that will address the question of whether uterine artery embolization or focused ultrasound is more effective for treating fibroids (7:15 a.m.-8:15 a.m., SPSC30, Room E350). Or check out refresher courses focused on MR-guided high-intensity ultrasound (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m., RC317, Room S504CD) or Doppler ultrasound for visceral, extremity, and carotid applications (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m., RC352, Room E264).

Also Tuesday morning, RSNA conference attendees can learn about musculoskeletal ultrasound during a scientific session that will cover topics such as using the technology to assess the rotator cable to dynamic ultrasonography of the shoulder to the prognostic value of ultrasound for assessing muscle strain injuries (8:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m., VSMK31, Room E451B).

Wednesday's offerings will include refresher courses on small parts interventional ultrasound (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m., RC531, Room E263) and nerve ultrasound in the shoulder and neck (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m., RC552, Room E264). But don't miss afternoon scientific sessions on multimodality breast imaging -- including ultrasound, of course (3:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m., SSM02, Room E451A) -- and vascular and interventional ultrasound, which will explore topics such as whether the technology can be used as a prophylactic screening tool for venous thromboembolism in high-risk patients, and how contrast-enhanced ultrasound compares to multislice CT for detecting endoleaks after endovascular aneurysm repair (3:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m., SSM24, Room E450B).

What's happening on Thursday, December 5? Get updates from the experts on kidney, gynecologic, and testicular ultrasound at a morning refresher course (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m., RC607, Room N228) or dynamic musculoskeletal ultrasound of the lower extremity (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m., RC652, Room E264). Scientific sessions on Thursday include ultrasound breast screening (10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m., SSQ01, Arie Crown Theater) and emergency radiology, particularly abdominal emergencies (10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m., SSQ05, Room N226).

To wrap up the meeting, on Friday the RSNA will present refresher courses on using ultrasound to image focal liver lesions and gallbladder and biliary disease (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m., RC810, Room E351) and also thyroid cancer (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m., RC831, Room E450B), as well as a workshop on pediatric neurosonography (8:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m., RC851, Room E261).

For highlights of the many ultrasound research papers scheduled for presentation at the RSNA 2013 meeting, read on. To view the RSNA's listing of abstracts for this year's scientific and educational program, click here.

Scientific and Educational Presentations
3D ultrasound feasible for breast cancer screening
Sunday, December 1 | 10:55 a.m.-11:05 a.m. | SSA01-02 | Arie Crown Theater
3D ultrasound is a reliable imaging technique for the detection and classification of benign and malignant breast tumors, according to Dutch researchers.
3D contrast subharmonic US wins for breast cancer vascularity
Sunday, December 1 | 11:25 a.m.-11:35 a.m. | SSA21-05 | Room S405AB
Using 3D contrast-enhanced subharmonic imaging improves visualization of breast cancer vascularity, which, in turn, can help clinicians better characterize lesions, according to researchers from Thomas Jefferson University.
Shear-wave elastography indicates lymph node involvement
Sunday, December 1 | 11:55 a.m.-12:05 p.m. | SSA01-08 | Arie Crown Theater
Shear-wave elastography is a predictor of lymph node metastasis in women with invasive breast cancer, according to researchers from the U.K.'s University of Dundee.
MRgFUS therapy for fibroids leads to long-term relief
Monday, December 2 | 3:20 p.m.-3:30 p.m. | SSE11-03 | Room E353B
MR-guided focused ultrasound surgery (MRgFUS) for symptomatic uterine fibroids leads to long-term symptom relief, according to study results to be discussed in this Monday afternoon presentation.
Not seeing the rotator cable on US means larger tears
Tuesday, December 3 | 8:50 a.m.-9:00 a.m. | VSMK31-02 | Room E451B
Unsuccessful visualization of a patient's rotator cable with ultrasound indicates that the tear area of a rotator cuff injury is large, according to researchers from the University of Montreal.
Ultrasound strain elastography improves soft-tissue workup
Tuesday, December 3 | 9:10 a.m.-9:20 a.m. | VSMK31-04 | Room E451B
In this session, researchers will discuss how adding ultrasound strain elastography to conventional grayscale ultrasound appears to improve diagnostic information for soft-tissue nodule workup.
Shear-wave elastography helps diagnose Achilles tendinopathy
Tuesday, December 3 | 9:20 a.m.-9:30 a.m. | VSMK31-05 | Room E451B
Assessing tendon softening with real-time shear-wave elastography can help clinicians evaluate Achilles tendinopathy, according to study results to be presented in this Tuesday session.
2-needle, US-guided tendinitis treatment better for calcifications
Tuesday, December 3 | 9:50 a.m.-10:00 a.m. | VSMK31-07 | Room E451B
Although one- and two-needle procedures are both effective for treating rotator cuff calcific tendinitis, using two needles reduces treatment time and makes dealing with soft and hard calcium deposits easier, Italian researchers have found.
MRgFUS is safe and effective for uterine fibroids
Wednesday, December 4 | 11:30 a.m.-11:40 a.m. | SSK23-07 | Room E353A
In this scientific session, Italian researchers will present a study that suggests MR-guided focused ultrasound surgery (MRgFUS) is noninvasive, safe, and effective for uterine fibroids.
US confirmation of suspect breast MRI means aggressive cancer
Wednesday, December 4 | 3:10 p.m.-3:20 p.m. | SSM02-02 | Room E451A
When a suspicious breast MRI lesion has an ultrasound correlate, it is more likely to be an aggressive cancer, according to a study to be presented during this Wednesday afternoon session.
Patients at high risk for thrombosis benefit from US
Wednesday, December 4 | 3:40 p.m.-3:50 p.m. | SSM24-05 | Room E450B
Patients at high risk for thrombosis can benefit from screening ultrasound, according to researchers at the University of Rochester Medical Center.
CEUS comparable to CT for detecting endoleaks post EVAR
Wednesday, December 4 | 3:50 p.m.-4:00 p.m. | SSM24-06 | Room E450B
Contrast-enhanced ultrasound (CEUS) performs as well as multislice CT angiography for detecting endoleaks in follow-up after endovascular aortic aneurysm repair (EVAR), according to researchers from the University of Munich.
Techs perform screening breast US just as well as physicians
Thursday, December 5 | 10:30 a.m.-10:40 a.m. | SSQ01-01 | Arie Crown Theater
Technologists perform handheld screening breast ultrasound just as well as physicians, which can help a radiology department by freeing up radiologists' time for other tasks, according to a study to be presented on Thursday at RSNA 2013.
Ultrasound can help identify appendicitis in borderline cases
Thursday, December 5 | 10:30 a.m.-10:40 a.m. | SSQ05-01 | Room N226
Ultrasound reliably predicts appendicitis if secondary characteristics are assessed when the appendix is of borderline size, defined as 6 mm to 7 mm in diameter, according to a study to be presented in this Thursday RSNA 2013 session.
Practice characteristics influence ABUS interpretation
Thursday, December 5 | 10:50 a.m.-11:00 a.m. | SSQ01-03 | Arie Crown Theater
In this scientific session, researchers from the University of Chicago will present findings from a study that evaluated variability in the clinical assessment of breast images acquired with mammography -- and whether adding 3D automated breast ultrasound (ABUS) improved radiologists' interpretations.
Radiologists equally confident in automated and handheld US
Thursday, December 5 | 11:00 a.m.-11:10 a.m. | SSQ01-04 | Arie Crown Theater
Radiologists show equal confidence in imaging suspicious masses with automated breast volumetric scanning and handheld breast ultrasound, according to research from the University of North Carolina.
Adding whole-breast US finds cancers DBT misses
Thursday, December 5 | 11:20 a.m.-11:30 a.m. | SSQ01-06 | Arie Crown Theater
In this presentation, Yale University researchers will discuss how supplemental whole-breast ultrasound performed in addition to digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT) can detect cancers DBT misses.
How does US compare to CT for identifying ovarian torsion?
Thursday, December 5 | 11:40 a.m.-11:50 a.m. | SSQ05-08 | Room N226
Pelvic ultrasound is considered the best imaging modality for evaluating ovarian torsion, but CT may offer comparable diagnostic value, according to researchers from Alpert Medical School at Brown University.