Application of Ultrasonography in the Diagnosis of Infectious Diseases in Resource-Limited Settings

Curr Infect Dis Rep. 2016 Jan;18(2):6. doi: 10.1007/s11908-015-0512-7.


Ultrasound (US) has vast potential in the field of infectious diseases, especially so in resource-limited settings. Recent technological advances have increased availability and access to ultrasound in low-resource settings, where the burden of infectious diseases is greatest. This paper collates the evidence for the utilization of ultrasound and evaluates its effectiveness in the diagnosis and management of a range of infectious diseases. This paper explores the role of ultrasound in population-based screening for specific diseases as well as highlights its benefits for individual patient management. We describe the common diagnostic signs seen on US for common and neglected parasitic, bacterial, and viral diseases. We proceed to document the emerging field of chest US which is proving to be a superior imaging modality for the diagnosis of specific pulmonary conditions. We conclude by discussing the efforts needed to formalize and rigorously evaluate the role of ultrasound in infectious diseases.

Keywords: Disease detection in resource-limited settings; Imaging for disease detection; Infectious disease screening; Ultrasound.