We used Doppler color flow imaging, a new noninvasive technique for mapping of intracardiac blood flow, to visualize and characterize the blood flow jet in 42 patients with mitral stenosis. Color flow imaging provides information about the direction of blood flow, its velocity, and the presence of turbulence. Although we found various jet configurations, most frequently the jet was centrally and apically directed and had a “candle flame” appearance (a central blue zone surrounded by hues of yellow and orange). The blood flow jet can be used to guide the positioning of the continuous-wave Doppler beam parallel to the blood flow; thus, the accuracy of the Doppler data can be enhanced. This new technology has promising potential for other clinical applications in cardiology.
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