New scanner targets high-end ob/gyn applicationsGE Medical Systems plans to roll out the final member of its Logiqultrasound product line at next week's American Institute of Ultrasoundin Medicine meeting in New York City. The new scanner,
GE Medical Systems plans to roll out the final member of its Logiqultrasound product line at next week's American Institute of Ultrasoundin Medicine meeting in New York City. The new scanner, dubbedLogiq 400, borrows many of the features of GE's Logiq family,albeit at a lower price point.
Milwaukee-based GE introduced the Logiq line with the debutof the super-premium Logiq 700 at the 1993 Radiological Societyof North America meeting. It followed that introduction with themore affordable Logiq 500 in 1994 (SCAN 12/15/93 and 4/6/94).
Logiq 400 represents the migration of the Logiq architectureto the value segment, according to Omar Ishrak, global generalmanager for ultrasound. Like Logiq 500, the new scanner featuresa digital beamformer with 64 channels, an architecture that wasconsidered cutting-edge just a few years ago. It is also availablein either gray-scale or color Doppler configurations. Logiq 400has received 510(k) clearance and GE is shipping the unit.
"This is clearly very close to state-of-the-art for premiummachines, so we are not making that many compromises as far asB-scan image quality goes," Ishrak said.
Initial sales of Logiq 400 will be targeted at ob/gyn practicesbased in either hospitals or large group practices, as well asurology practices. The private-practice ob/gyn segment will continueto be addressed by GE's RT 3200 Advantage II, a 32-channel gray-scale-onlysystem that will remain in GE's product line. Logiq 400 will costabout 25% less than Logiq 500 but twice as much as RT 3200, makingit wise for GE to keep the older scanner in its price book inorder to participate in the low end of the ob/gyn market.
GE believes that demand will be strong for Logiq 400 in ob/gynpractices, especially those that use color.
"We are convinced that there is considerable applicationof color flow in obstetrics and we will try to convince the obstetriciansthat they should use color flow," Ishrak said. "Anytime you are looking at high-risk cases or where the diagnosisis more sophisticated, you need to use Logiq 400."
Logiq 400's features include a TriMode capability that allowsoperators to use all its scanning modes at the same time for displayinganatomy, blood flow, and quantitative Doppler blood-flow informationsimultaneously.
Most of the probes available for Logiq 500 can also be usedwith Logiq 400, Ishrak said. Logiq 400 also supports GE's versionof power Doppler as well as the vendor's InSite remote diagnosticsprogram. Unlike Logiq 500, Logiq 400 does not support cardiacapplications, because of its lower frame rate.
"The main performance difference between the two machineslies in color flow, where the Logiq 500 is superior in its color-flowperformance," Ishrak said.
Logiq 400 completes the development of new platforms in theseries, Ishrak said. GE will continue to develop new productsand upgrades for the scanners but does not have plans to introduceany new price points in the line.
In addition to showing Logiq 400 at the AIUM meeting, GE willdisplay new applications for Logiq 500. The company will showa new vascular probe and a new biplane transesophageal (TEE) probe.
Not to be displayed at the AIUM conference is an unspecified"breakthrough technology" under development. GE officialshave stated that they plan one ultrasound breakthrough a yearto be shown first on Logiq 700 and later migrated to the otherscanners.
"That is targeted for this year but not at the AIUM show,"Ishrak said.