We have presented recommendations for the optimum acquisition of quantitative two-dimensional data in the current echocardiographic environment. It is likely that advances in imaging may enhance or supplement these approaches. For example, three-dimensional reconstruction methods may greatly augment the accuracy of volume determination if they become more efficient. The development of three-dimensional methods will depend in turn on vastly improved transthoracic resolution similar to that now obtainable by transesophageal echocardiography. Better resolution will also make the use of more direct methods of measuring myocardial mass practical. For example, if the epicardium were well resolved in the long-axis apical views, the myocardial shell volume could be measured directly by the biplane method of discs rather than extrapolating myocardial thickness from a single short-axis view. At present, it is our opinion that current technology justifies the clinical use of the quantitative two-dimensional methods described in this article. When technically feasible, and if resources permit, we recommend the routine reporting of left ventricular ejection fraction, diastolic volume, mass, and wall motion score.