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The use of ultrasound to identify milk ejection in women - tips and pitfalls.

Geddes DT - Int Breastfeed J (2009)

Bottom Line: At milk ejection, the echogenic duct walls expand as milk flows forward towards the nipple.Milk flow appears as echogenic foci rapidly moving within the milk duct.This paper provides a detailed description of the ultrasound technique used for the detection and reviews nuances associated with the procedure.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: M310, Biomedical, Biomolecular and Chemical Sciences, Faculty of Life and Physical Sciences, The University of Western Australia, Western Australia, Australia. donna.geddes@uwa.edu.au.

ABSTRACT
Diagnostic ultrasound imaging of the breast has been limited principally to the abnormal, non-lactating breast. Due to the rapid improvement of imaging technology, high-resolution ultrasound images can now be obtained of the lactating breast. Ultrasound scanning techniques, however, require modifications to accommodate the breast changes that occur in lactation. Furthermore, the function of the breast with regard to milk ejection can be assessed with ultrasound by identification of milk duct dilation and milk flow. At milk ejection, the echogenic duct walls expand as milk flows forward towards the nipple. Milk flow appears as echogenic foci rapidly moving within the milk duct. This paper provides a detailed description of the ultrasound technique used for the detection and reviews nuances associated with the procedure.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Ultrasound image of a milk ducts in the human lactating breast at milk ejection. Two main milk ducts are displayed on ultrasound as a hypoechoic (black) structure with echogenic walls (white). Duct 1 is more superficial and has increased from 1.95 mm to 3.44 mm in diameter. Duct 2 has increased from 3.72 mm to 6.24 mm.
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Figure 7: Ultrasound image of a milk ducts in the human lactating breast at milk ejection. Two main milk ducts are displayed on ultrasound as a hypoechoic (black) structure with echogenic walls (white). Duct 1 is more superficial and has increased from 1.95 mm to 3.44 mm in diameter. Duct 2 has increased from 3.72 mm to 6.24 mm.

Mentions: The ultrasound appearances of milk ejection are summarized in Table 2. At milk ejection, duct dilation is observed (Figure 6 and 7) due to increased intra-ductal pressure and the forward flow of milk can also be identified as the echogenic flecks (fat globules in the milk) moving towards the nipple (Additional file 2). There is variability in the degree of duct dilation between women, with some having large increases in duct diameter (Additional file 3) and others having minimal increases (Additional file 2). Milk flow is difficult to detect with colour Doppler flow imaging, but is possible at very low flow settings (Figure 8). During the second half of a milk ejection, reverse flow of the milk is often observed as the duct reduces back to its resting diameter (Additional file 4) [2]. Multiple ejections are shown as pulsatile increases and decreases in duct diameter. An average of 2.5 milk ejections have been detected during a breastfeed (range 0 to 9) [2] and 4 to 5 milk ejections detected for a fifteen minute expression with an electric breast pump (range 1 to 12) [4].


The use of ultrasound to identify milk ejection in women - tips and pitfalls.

Geddes DT - Int Breastfeed J (2009)

Ultrasound image of a milk ducts in the human lactating breast at milk ejection. Two main milk ducts are displayed on ultrasound as a hypoechoic (black) structure with echogenic walls (white). Duct 1 is more superficial and has increased from 1.95 mm to 3.44 mm in diameter. Duct 2 has increased from 3.72 mm to 6.24 mm.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC2710318&req=5

Figure 7: Ultrasound image of a milk ducts in the human lactating breast at milk ejection. Two main milk ducts are displayed on ultrasound as a hypoechoic (black) structure with echogenic walls (white). Duct 1 is more superficial and has increased from 1.95 mm to 3.44 mm in diameter. Duct 2 has increased from 3.72 mm to 6.24 mm.
Mentions: The ultrasound appearances of milk ejection are summarized in Table 2. At milk ejection, duct dilation is observed (Figure 6 and 7) due to increased intra-ductal pressure and the forward flow of milk can also be identified as the echogenic flecks (fat globules in the milk) moving towards the nipple (Additional file 2). There is variability in the degree of duct dilation between women, with some having large increases in duct diameter (Additional file 3) and others having minimal increases (Additional file 2). Milk flow is difficult to detect with colour Doppler flow imaging, but is possible at very low flow settings (Figure 8). During the second half of a milk ejection, reverse flow of the milk is often observed as the duct reduces back to its resting diameter (Additional file 4) [2]. Multiple ejections are shown as pulsatile increases and decreases in duct diameter. An average of 2.5 milk ejections have been detected during a breastfeed (range 0 to 9) [2] and 4 to 5 milk ejections detected for a fifteen minute expression with an electric breast pump (range 1 to 12) [4].

Bottom Line: At milk ejection, the echogenic duct walls expand as milk flows forward towards the nipple.Milk flow appears as echogenic foci rapidly moving within the milk duct.This paper provides a detailed description of the ultrasound technique used for the detection and reviews nuances associated with the procedure.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: M310, Biomedical, Biomolecular and Chemical Sciences, Faculty of Life and Physical Sciences, The University of Western Australia, Western Australia, Australia. donna.geddes@uwa.edu.au.

ABSTRACT
Diagnostic ultrasound imaging of the breast has been limited principally to the abnormal, non-lactating breast. Due to the rapid improvement of imaging technology, high-resolution ultrasound images can now be obtained of the lactating breast. Ultrasound scanning techniques, however, require modifications to accommodate the breast changes that occur in lactation. Furthermore, the function of the breast with regard to milk ejection can be assessed with ultrasound by identification of milk duct dilation and milk flow. At milk ejection, the echogenic duct walls expand as milk flows forward towards the nipple. Milk flow appears as echogenic foci rapidly moving within the milk duct. This paper provides a detailed description of the ultrasound technique used for the detection and reviews nuances associated with the procedure.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus