5 Ultrasound Modes You Need to Know About

February 01 2021

Healthcare worker applying gel to a transducer in front of an ultrasound image

Ultrasound modes determine how an image will be displayed to the radiologist. This is important because it affects what information can be inferred from the screen.

The efficiency of your ultrasound tests relies on how effective your equipment is. That’s why it is critical to know the difference between each of the different ultrasound modes and understand which is best for your practice.

Learn more about ultrasound modes and how they are used across a range of healthcare specialties.

Types of Ultrasound Modes

There are five different types of ultrasound modes:

1. A-Mode Ultrasound

A-mode ultrasound is the simplest. The image is shown on the screen in one-dimension. A single transducer scans the body. Using an X and Y access, the collected information is then plotted on the screen as a function of depth.

A-mode, or amplitude mode, is ideal for measuring distances. A-mode ultrasound may also be used to discover cysts or tumors.

2. B-Mode Ultrasound

B-mode ultrasound uses linear array transducers to simultaneously scan a plane through the body. These echoes are converted by the machine into a 2D image. This is the most commonly used ultrasound mode.

B-mode, or 2B mode, has a wide range of applications. The visual created by B-mode ultrasound is easy to interpret quickly.

3. M-Mode Ultrasound

M-mode ultrasound works similarly to a stop-motion video. This type takes a collection of A-mode or B-mode ultrasound images and uses them, in effect, to create a video.

M-mode ultrasound, or “movement mode”, allows doctors to see the amplitude of movements. This is ideal for regulating the velocity of organ structures or observing differences over a period of time.

4. C-Mode Ultrasound

C-mode ultrasound is similar to B-mode in that the images are formed in the same plane. The transducer is moved in the 2D plane at a fixed depth. This mode has not been fully explored and is currently mainly used in industry testing.

5. Doppler Ultrasound

Doppler ultrasound allows healthcare professionals to visualize blood flow. This mode produces a colored image, helping doctors analyze heart valves, blood, tissues, and more.

Doppler ultrasound is typically used in cardiology practices. Check out our previous blogs on “Everything You Need to Know About Doppler” and “5 Types of Doppler Ultrasound” to learn more.

Ultrasound image using the Doppler mode

Ultrasound Machines

Now that you know more about ultrasound modes, you’ll have a better understanding of which ultrasound machine is a good fit for your practice. If you’re in the market for new equipment, turn to UltrasoundQuotes.

We offer free price quotes on a variety of machines so that you can compare your options before you buy. Simply let us know what you’re looking for and our experts will match you with industry-leading equipment. Find an ultrasound machine that fits your needs and budget today.

Get Pricing on Ultrasound Machines for Your Practice.