Ultrasound measurement of aortic diameter in a national screening programme

T. C. Hartshorne*, C. N. McCollum, J. J. Earnshaw, J. Morris, A. Nasim

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

72 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: Currently there is no universally accepted standard for ultrasound measurement of abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA). The aim was to investigate the reliability and reproducibility of inner to inner (ITI) versus outer to outer (OTO) ultrasound measurement of AAA diameter. Methods: A prospective study design was used to collect 60 random images of aorta (1.4-7.1 cm). Inner and outer wall diameter measurements were then performed by 13 qualified AAA screening technicians and 11 vascular sonographers. Results: The mean (range) diameter for all 60 aortas by ITI was 3.91 cm (1.39-6.80) and by OTO was 4.18 cm (1.63-7.09), a significant mean difference of 0.27 cm (95% CI:0.23-0.32 cm). The reproducibility coefficients for differences between technicians were 0.30 cm (95% CI:0.24-0.36) for ITI and 0.42 cm (95% CI:0.35-0.49) for OTO indicating significantly better repeatability using ITI. Finally, 15 images were measured twice in random order by all screeners and sonographers. For AAAs >5 cm, repeatability was significantly better with ITI than OTO (0.14 vs. 0.21;p = 0.016). Conclusion: There was the expected difference in AAA diameter between the two methods (0.27 cm). However, ITI wall method was measurably more reproducible.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)195-199
Number of pages5
JournalEuropean Journal of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Aortic aneurysm
  • Screening
  • Surveillance
  • Ultrasound


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