Objective: The purpose of this study is to investigate whether high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) exposure is able to produce a fistula between the bladder and abdominal wall of a fetus with lower urinary tract obstruction (LUTO). Materials and methods: We constructed a prototype HIFU transducer in combination with an imaging probe. HIFU was applied to the lower abdomen of a rabbit neonate that was complicated by LUTO as an experimental model to produce a fistula; HIFU was applied in a tank filled with degassed water. Exposed lesions were assessed by histological analysis at necropsy. Results: When HIFU was applied at 5.5 kW/cm2 of spatial-peak temporal average intensity (SPTA), a fistula was created between the lower abdominal wall and the urinary bladder; urine gushed out from the bladder through the fistula within 60 s after HIFU exposure. Conclusion: The findings suggest that fetal diseases such as LUTO can be non-invasively treated using HIFU exposure from even outside the maternal body, though this study was performed in a water tank.
- Fetal therapy
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging