Shigeo Satomura

Shigeo Satomura (1919 - 1960)

Shigeo Satomura (1919 – 1960) was a Japanese scientist.

Together with Ziro Kaneko, he constructed the Doppler flowmeter to measure the Doppler noise from blood vessels.

Satomura worked with Yoshida and Nimura to assess the motion of the walls and valves of the heart and developed the transcutaneous noninvasive Doppler flowmeter in 1958. Then with Prof Kaneko to study blood flow in the human brain in cases of dementia (to differentiate the Alzheimer variety from those of cerebrovascular origin) with the ‘ultrasonic blood rheograph’


  • Born 1919, Osaka Japan
  • 1944 – PhD from Osaka University School of Physics
  • 1945 – Institute of Scientific and Industrial Research, Osaka University
  • 1960 – Doctor of Medical Sciences, Osaka University
  • Died 1960, Osaka Japan at the age of 41 from subarachnoid haemorrhage

Medical Eponyms

  • Satomura Doppler flowmeter
  • Satomura blood-rheograph
  • Satomura Ultrasonic Doppler Cardiograph

When an ultrasonic beam is radiated into the blood vessel by a transducer placed on the surface of the skin, the reflected waves are produced from the blood-flow. Hence they can be detected as a kind of tone by means of a sensitive receiver. Because the intensity and the frequency character of this tone is proportional to the velocity of the bloodflow, it is possible to investigate the behaviour of the bloodflow through this method.

Satomura 1959.

Key Medical Attributions

  • 1955 – investigated the use of microwave and ultrasound to measure vibrations in wooden boards. Applied these ultrasound research principles to aid medical diagnosis. Worked with cardiologists T. Yoshida and Yasaharu Nimura at the Osaka University Hospital to measure heart motion and pulsations of peripheral blood vessels and eye vessels.
  • 1955 – Published “A new method of the mechanical vibration measurement and its application” demonstrating that doppler signals can be retrieved from heart movements when insonated with 3 MHz ultrasonic waves
  • 1960 – Completed studies and papers on the “Ultrasonic Doppler Cardiograph” and “Ultrasonic blood rheograph”.

Major Publications

  • Satomura S, Matsubara S, Yoshioka M. A new method of mechanical vibration measurement and its application. Mem Inst Sci Ind Res Osaka Univ. 1956;13:125.
  • Satomura S. Ultrasonic Doppler Method for the Inspection of Cardiac Functions. J. Accoust. Soc. Amer. 29 1957; 1181-85.
  • Kaneko Z., Koniuta K. Kotani H and Satomura S. Studies on peripheral circulation with ultrasonics, abstract of the 65th Meeting of Kinki Psychiat. Neurol. Society (feb 21, 1959). Psychiat Neurol. Jpn 61, 2140.
  • Satomura S. Study on the diagnostic application of ultrasonics. Med J Osaka Univ. 1959. 11, 4747-4757.
  • Satomura S. Study of the flow patterns in peripheral arteries by ultrasonics. J Acoust. Soc. Jpn 15, 1959; 151-158
  • Satomura S, Nimura J, Yoshida T. Ultrasonic Doppler Cardiograph. Proceeding of the Third International Conference of Medical Electronics. Springfield, III. : Charles C. Thomas, 1960. p249. [Reference]
  • Kaneko Z, Komuta K, Kotani H, Satomura S. Studies on ultrasonic blood-rheograph. Brain and Nerve 1960; 12. 92 1-935.
  • Kaneko Z, Kotani H, Komuta K, Satomura S. Studies on peripheral circulation by Ultrasonic Blood-Rheograph. Jpn Circ.J. 1961; 25, 203-213


  • Kaneko Z. First steps in the development of the Doppler flowmeter. Ultrasound Med Biol. 1986 Mar;12(3):187-95. [PMID 2938323]
  • Woo JSK. Shigeo Satomura. Obstetric Ultrasound. 2006
  • Coman IM, Popescu BA. Shigeo Satomura: 60 years of Doppler ultrasound in medicine. Cardiovasc Ultrasound. 2015; 13: 48. [PMC4690426]

eponymictionary CTA


the person behind the name

BA MA (Oxon) MBChB (Edin) FACEM FFSEM. Emergency physician, Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital.  Passion for rugby; medical history; medical education; and asynchronous learning #FOAMed evangelist. Co-founder and CTO of Life in the Fast lane | Eponyms | Books | Twitter |

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.