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Details for Patent: 6,620,404

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Details for Patent: 6,620,404

Title: Gaseous ultrasound contrast media and method for selecting gases for use as ultrasound contrast media
Abstract:Disclosed herein are agents for enhancing the contrast in an ultrasound image. These agents are extremely small bubbles, or "microbubbles," comprised of specially selected gases. The microbubbles described herein exhibit long life spans in solution and may be produced at a size small enough to traverse the lungs, thus enabling improved ultrasound imaging of the cardiovascular system and other vital organs. Also disclosed herein is a method for selecting gases from which contrast agents may be produced. The method is based on calculations using inherent physical properties of gases and describes a means to associate the properties of a gas with the time for dissolution of microbubbles comprised of the gas.
Inventor(s): Quay; Steven C. (Pacific Palisades, CA)
Assignee: Amersham Health A/S (Oslo, NO)
Filing Date:Sep 28, 2000
Application Number:09/670,894
Claims:1. A method of resonance imaging using ultrasonic energy transmitted by an ultrasonic source to an object or body to be imaged, comprising: introducing into said object or body a contrast agent comprising microbubbles containing a gas selected from perfluoropropane, and perfluoropentane, or a mixture thereof; and ultrasonically imaging at least a portion of said object or body.

2. A method according to claim 1 in which the gas is perfluoropropane.

3. A method according to claim 1 in which the gas is perfluoropentane.

4. A method according to claim 1 in which the microbubbles comprise free gas microbubbles.

5. A method according to claim 1 in which the resonance imaging is medical resonance imaging.

6. A method of medical ultrasound resonance imaging using ultrasonic energy transmitted by an ultrasonic source to a body to be imaged, comprising: introducing into said body an ultrasound contrast agent comprising microbubbles containing a gas selected from perfluoropropane, and perfluoropentane, or a mixture thereof; and ultrasonically imaging at least a portion of said body.

7. A method according to claim 6 in which the gas is perfluoropropane.

8. A method according to claim 6 in which the gas is perfluoropentane.

9. A method according to claim 6 in which the microbubbles comprise free gas microbubbles.

10. A method according to claim 6 in which a portion or structure of a body is imaged.
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