Side lobe artifact

Last revised by Andrew Murphy on 31 Mar 2020

Side lobe artifacts occur where side lobes reflect sound from a strong reflector that is outside of the central beam, and where the echoes are displayed as if they originated from within the central beam.

Ultrasound transducer crystals expand and contract to produce primary ultrasound beams in the direction of expansion and contraction. Secondary beams occur because the crystals also expand and contract radially. These radial beams are called side lobe beams. Side lobe beams are low-intensity beams that surround the central beam.

Side lobe artifacts are echogenic, linear or curvilinear artifacts. Strong reflectors include bowel gas adjacent to the gallbladder or urinary bladder.

See also

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Cases and figures

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