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Pulse Echo Wireless Probe vs Scan Pad Ultrasound Machine

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The Scan Pad is the current market leading portable ultrasound machine for dog breeders who are serious about scanning. Last night, I put it up against the PulseEcho – a cost-effective, wireless ultrasound probe, typical of those that some breeders are investing in for home use.


Bladder of a Dogue De Bordeux, as seen with the Scan Pad:


  • The bladder is shown as a clear, black, anechoic space.
  • The bladder wall is well depicted.
  • The bright gas of the colon can be seen below the bladder.


Now scanned with the PulseEcho Wireless probe:



  • The bladder walls are again seen clearly.
  • Depth has not been adjusted on the wireless scanner, which is why it appears smaller.
  • There is less dynamic range on the wireless probe, meaning that some subtle differences in echogenicity are lost. The colon, for example – which is very obvious on the Scan Pad – is not easily discernable from general noise on the wireless scanner.
  • The beam width of the wireless probe is very wide, meaning that the bladder is shown as murky, even sludgy. This is an ultrasound artifact; something that is not really there. It’s because the ultrasound beam is not properly focused, and so it impinges upon surrounding tissues. The ultrasound machine doesn’t know that these signals are not arising from the centre of the beam, so it falsely places these reflections as if they have arisen from there, causing this erroneous placement of structures inside what should be a clean, black space.


It’s important to know what the key differences are between different ultrasound machines so that you make the correct purchasing decision for your intended use. A veterinarian’s needs are completely different from those of a mobile canine pregnancy scanner. A mobile scanner’s needs differ significantly from someone just looking to scan their own bitches or queens at home. Learn the basics of ultrasound, with diagrams and example images, from the following book: Ultrasound for Canine Pregnancy Scanning, so that you do not end up with a white elephant – or spend any more or less than you have to.


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