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The Clinical Role of 2D and Doppler Echocardiography Artifacts: a Review


Purpose of Review

Two-dimensional (2D) echocardiography and Doppler echocardiography are important tools for cardiac evaluation unfortunately affected by artifacts, which can obscure pathology. Certain artifacts may be inevitable, but others can be diminished by changing the probe position.

Recent Findings

Common 2D imaging artifacts include shadowing and enhancement. There are a variety of reverberation artifacts, ranging from comet tail to mirroring, that result in atypical duplication. At the same time, device and electronic interference create unique interference patterns. Doppler imaging has its own specific artifacts. These can alter spectral graphs, such as aliasing, or be seen on color Doppler imaging, such as pseudoflow or blooming.


Misinterpreting artifacts can result in improper management; thus, recognition is crucial. However, some artifacts can even be beneficial for evaluation and decision-making. We provide a review of artifacts in 2D and Doppler echocardiography for this reason.

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The authors acknowledge Sarah Kennedy of Aurora Cardiovascular and Thoracic Services for editorial preparation of the manuscript and Brian Miller and Brian Schurrer of Aurora Cardiovascular and Thoracic Services for assistance with the figures.

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Aashish Katapadi—literature review and analysis and drafting of the manuscript.

Bijoy K. Khandheria—critical revision of the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Bijoy K. Khandheria.

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Katapadi, A., Khandheria, B.K. The Clinical Role of 2D and Doppler Echocardiography Artifacts: a Review. Curr Cardiovasc Imaging Rep 15, 69–77 (2022).

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