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Digital processing that increases resolution by spatial deconvolution and histogram-based amplitude mapping has been used to improve ultrasonic abdominal image quality. The processing was applied to pulse-echo ultrasound data obtained from clinical imaging instrumentation modified to permit digital recording of signals in either RF or video forms for subsequent off-line analysis. Spatial deconvolution was accomplished both along the axis and across the width of the ultrasonic beam. Axial deconvolution was carried out on RF data with a point spread function derived from the echo of a wire target. Lateral deconvolution was performed on the video envelope placed in a matrix by an inverse filter with parameters that adjust themselves to the spatial frequency content of the image being processed. Resultant image amplitudes were mapped into a hyperbolic distribution to increase image contrast for improved demonstration of low amplitudes. The combination of processing produced resolution improvements to show boundaries more sharply and contrast changes to demonstrate more detail in the images.