Siemens introduces wireless ultrasound system
13 December 2012
Siemens has launched the ACUSON Freestyle ultrasound system
that features wireless transducers for cable-free imaging.
The system incorporates a number of innovations, including
acoustics, system architecture, radio design, miniaturization, and
The ACUSON Freestyle system will expand ultrasound’s use in
interventional and therapeutic applications, where the technology
provides numerous workflow and image quality advantages. The
development of wireless ultrasound is in line with the objectives of
the Healthcare Sector’s global initiative Agenda 2013 — specifically
in the areas of innovation and accessibility.
Transducer cables have always been a cumbersome necessity in
ultrasound imaging. Not only are they an impediment to fast and
ergonomic examination procedures, but they also present an infection
control risk in sterile interventional settings, even when they are
covered in sterile sheaths.
“Siemens Healthcare is the first company to introduce an
ultrasound system that enables physicians to work with cable-free
transducers,” says Jeffrey Bundy, CEO of the Siemens Healthcare
Ultrasound business unit. “The ACUSON Freestyle system facilitates
the use of advanced ultrasound technology into clinical fields
requiring a sterile environment, such as interventional radiology,
anesthesiology, critical care, cath lab, or emergency care.”
Wireless transducers can also expand ultrasound into new and
emerging applications such as administering nerve blocks, enhancing
vascular access, and improving target localization through
ultrasound guidance during therapeutic interventions and biopsies.
For image acquisition and processing, the ACUSON Freestyle system
employs advanced synthetic aperture imaging technology, an
integration of proprietary hardware and software that was
specifically developed for the wireless signal transmission of
full-resolution digital image data at very high data rates.
Focusing on each pixel in the image, this method produces
excellent image quality throughout the field of view. This design
reduces the transducer’s power requirements, increasing battery
life. Wireless real-time ultrasound data transmission is further
enabled through the proprietary development of a novel
ultra-wideband radio technology, which, operating at a high
frequency of 7.8 Gigahertz, is not susceptible to interference with
other electronic equipment.
Three wireless transducers are available for the ACUSON Freestyle
system, covering a range of general imaging, vascular, and
high-frequency applications such as musculoskeletal and nerve
imaging. The user can operate the transducers up to three meters
away from the system, which includes an ergonomic interface that
enables remote control of scanning parameters from within the
sterile field. The ACUSON Freestyle system has a 38-centimeter,
high-resolution LED display. The system console can be mounted
easily on a lightweight cart and also operates on battery power.
The products mentioned here are not commercially available in all
countries, due to regulatory reasons in each country.