Diagnostic medical sonogramThe most common indication for an ultrasound exam of the spleen is to evaluate the overall size of the organ for splenomegaly.  The spleen has multiple functions that include filtering of blood and fighting infections as part of the immune system.

Sonographic evaluation of the spleen includes assessment of size and the gray scale appearance of the parenchyma. Splenomegaly is a common clinical finding, although nonspecific, for many of the Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTD).  Infections and abscess formation within the spleen can alter the gray scale appearance of the parenchyma.

Visceral Leishmaniasis is one of the NTD that is associated with splenomegaly; if left untreated 90% of patients die.

Splenic-microabcesses

Additional Resources

PAHO Web. Visceral Leishmanianis