Ultrasound elastography tracks tissue displacements under small levels of compression to obtain images of strain, a mechanical property useful in the detection and characterization of pathology. Due to the nature of ultrasound beamforming, only tissue displacements in the direction of beam propagation, referred to as 'axial', are measured to high quality, although an ability to measure other components of tissue displacement is desired to more fully characterize the mechanical behavior of tissue. Previous studies have used multiple one-dimensional (1D) angled axial displacements tracked from steered ultrasound beams to reconstruct improved quality trans-axial displacements within the scan plane ('lateral'). We show that two-dimensional (2D) displacement tracking is not possible with unmodified electronically-steered ultrasound data, and present a method of reshaping frames of steered ultrasound data to retain axial-lateral orthogonality, which permits 2D displacement tracking. Simulated and experimental ultrasound data are used to compare changes in image quality of lateral displacements reconstructed using 1D and 2D tracked steered axial and steered lateral data. Reconstructed lateral displacement image quality generally improves with the use of 2D displacement tracking at each steering angle, relative to axial tracking alone, particularly at high levels of compression. Due to the influence of tracking noise, unsteered lateral displacements exhibit greater accuracy than axial-based reconstructions at high levels of applied strain.© (2011) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.