Power Doppler imaging and color Doppler flow imaging for the evaluation of normal and pathological vertebral arteries

Stefan Ries, Wolfgang Steinke, Gerald Devuyst, Nikos Artemis, Attila Valikovics, Michael Hennerici

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Citations (Scopus)


Recently, an ultrasound method for vascular applications using the amplitude of the reflected echosignal for the generation of intravascular color signals has been introduced. We compared the utility of this power Doppler imaging (PDI) with conventional color Doppler flow imaging (CDFI) for examination of vertebral arteries (VA). Forty-nine patients with signs and symptoms suggesting ischemia within the posterior circulation were evaluated. Quality of blood flow visualization by PDI and CDFI at the different VA segments was classified according to a four point scale. Furthermore, combined sonographic findings were correlated with the results of digital substraction and/or magnetic resonance angiography (DSA, MRA). Power Doppler imaging provided a significantly superior visualization of the intertransversal VA, whereas display of the intracranial V4 segment was superior significantly on CDFI. Both methods were complementary for the evaluation of the VA at the origin. With respect to the angiographic findings, combined CDFI and PDI achieved a sensitivity of 90.63% and a specificity of 97.22% for the differentiation of healthy and pathologic VAs. Power Doppler imaging is complementary to CDFI for the sonographic assessment of VA disease. Combined use of PDI and CDFI achieves a high sensitivity and specificity, thus increasing diagnostic confidence.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71-74
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Neuroimaging
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1998


  • Doppler flow imaging
  • Ischemia
  • Power Doppler imaging
  • Vertebral arteries

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Clinical Neurology

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