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Motion of the carotid artery wall is important for the quantification of arterial elasticity and contractility and can be estimated with a number of techniques. In this paper, a framework for quantitative evaluation of motion analysis techniques from B-mode ultrasound images is introduced. Six synthetic sequences were produced using 1) a real image corrupted by Gaussian and speckle noise of 25 and 15 dB, and 2) the ultrasound simulation package Field II. In both cases, a mathematical model was used, which simulated the motion of the arterial wall layers and the surrounding tissue, in the radial and longitudinal directions. The performance of four techniques, namely optical flow (OFHS), weighted least-squares optical flow (OFLK(WLS)), block matching (BM), and affine block motion model (ABMM), was investigated in the context of this framework. The average warping indices were lowest for OFLK(WLS) (1.75 pixels), slightly higher for ABMM (2.01 pixels), and highest for BM (6.57 pixels) and OFHS (11.57 pixels). Due to its superior performance, OFLK(WLS) was used to quantify motion of selected regions of the arterial wall in real ultrasound image sequences of the carotid artery. Preliminary results indicate that OFLK(WLS) is promising, because it efficiently quantified radial, longitudinal, and shear strains in healthy adults and diseased subjects.
Information Technology in Biomedicine, IEEE Transactions on (Volume:16 , Issue: 5 )
Date of Publication: Sept. 2012