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Usefulness of ultrasonic strain measurement- based shear modulus reconstruction for diagnosis and thermal treatment

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1 Author(s)
Sumi, Chikayoshi ; Dept. of Electr. & Electron. Eng., Sophia Univ., Tokyo, Japan

We previously reported an ultrasonic strain measurement-based one-dimensional (T-D) shear modulus reconstruction technique using a regularisation method for differential diagnosis of malignancies on human superficial tissues (e.g., breast tissues). Here, ultrasonic strain measurement-based 2-D and 3-D shear modulus reconstruction techniques are described, and the 1-D technique is reviewed arid subsequently applied to various human in vivo tissues, including deeply situated tissues (e.g., liver). Because soft tissues are deformed in 3-D space by externally situated arbitrary mechanical sources, the accuracy of the low-dimensional (i.e., 1-D or 2-D) reconstructions is lower to that of 3-D reconstruction due to occurrence of erroneous reconstruction artifacts (i.e., the reconstructed modulus is different than reality). These artifacts are confirmed on simulated inhomogeneous cubic phantoms containing a spherical homogenous inclusion using numerically calculated deformation data. The superiority of quasi-real-time imaging of the shear modulus is then demonstrated by comparing it with conventional B-mode imaging and strain imaging from the standpoints of monitoring the effectiveness of minimally invasive thermal therapy as well as differential diagnosis. Because the 2-D and 3-D techniques require special ultrasonic (US) equipment, the 1-D technique using conventional US imaging equipment is used, even though erroneous artifacts will occur. Specifically, the 1-D technique is applied as a diagnostic tool for differentiating malignancies in human in vivo liver and breast tissue, and a monitoring technique for determining the effectiveness of interstitial electromagnetic wave (micro and rf) thermal therapy on human in vivo liver and calf in vitro liver. Even when using the 1-D technique, reconstructed shear moduli were confirmed to be a suitable measure for monitoring thermal treatment as well as differential diagnosis. These results are encouraging in that they will promote- - use of 2-D and 3-D reconstruction techniques.

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Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:52 ,  Issue: 10 )