Analysis of Systolic Backflow and Secondary Helical Blood Flow in the Ascending Aorta Using Vector Flow Imaging

Kristoffer Lindskov Hansen, Hasse Møller-Sørensen, Jesper Kjaergaard, Maiken Brit Jensen, Jens Teglgaard Lund, Mads Møller Pedersen, Theis Lange, Jørgen Arendt Jensen, Michael Bachmann Nielsen

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Secondary rotational flow and systolic backflow are seen in the ascending aorta and, in this study, were analyzed with the vector velocity method transverse oscillation. Twenty-five patients were scanned intra-operatively, and the vector velocities were related to estimates of transesophageal echocardiography and pulmonary artery catheter thermodilution, and associated with gender, age, aortic diameter, atherosclerotic plaques, left ventricular ejection fraction and previous myocardial infarctions. Secondary flow was present for all patients. The duration and rotational frequency (p <0.001) and the duration and flow direction of the secondary flow (p <0.002) were associated. Systolic backflow was present in 40% of the patients and associated with systolic velocities (p <0.002) and the presence of atherosclerotic plaques (p <0.001). No other significant associations were observed. The study indicates that backflow is injurious and that secondary flow is a normal flow phenomenon. The study also shows that transverse oscillation can provide new information on blood flow in the ascending aorta.
Original languageEnglish
JournalUltrasound in Medicine and Biology
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)899-908
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Radiology, Nuclear Medicine and Imaging
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Biophysics
  • Ascending aorta
  • Atherosclerotic plaque
  • Secondary rotational flow
  • Systolic backflow
  • Transverse oscillation
  • Ultrasound
  • Vector flow Imaging
  • Blood
  • Blood vessels
  • Echocardiography
  • Hemodynamics
  • Rotational flow
  • Secondary flow
  • Ultrasonics
  • Vectors
  • Backflow
  • Vector flow
  • Oscillating flow


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