JOURNAL ARTICLE
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White-gray matter echogenicity ratio and resistive index: sonographic bedside markers of cerebral hypoxic-ischemic injury/edema?

OBJECTIVE: Head ultrasonography (HUS) is a reliable and easy to perform bedside imaging technique that can give valuable information about degree of brain injury/edema after perinatal asphyxia in term neonates. The goals of our study were to determine whether semiquantitative markers such as standardized white matter/gray matter (WM/GM) echogenicity ratio and resistive index (RI) value measured by HUS differs between asphyxiated term neonates and healthy controls.

STUDY DESIGN: Thirty-one carefully selected term neonates who suffered from perinatal hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) were included in the study. The ratio of the WM/GM echogenicity of the cingulate gyrus was calculated. In addition, the RI value was measured in the anterior cerebral artery. US scalars were compared with 11 healthy neonates.

RESULT: WM/GM ratio is significantly increased and RI value significantly decreased in asphyxiated term neonates compared with healthy subjects.

CONCLUSION: WM/GM ratio and RI value allows discriminating between asphyxiated neonates and healthy subjects. These US scalars may serve as valuable, easy to acquire semiquantitative bedside markers of brain HIE, when magnetic resonance imaging is unavailable or cannot be performed in the acute setting.

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