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Considering Angle Selection When Using Ultrasound Electrode Displacement Elastography to Evaluate Radiofrequency Ablation of Tissues

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      Percutaneous radiofrequency ablation (RFA) is a minimally invasive treatment to thermally destroy tumors. Ultrasound-based electrode-displacement elastography is an emerging technique for evaluating the region of RFA-induced lesions. The angle between the imaging probe and the RFA electrode can influence electrode-displacement elastography when visualizing the ablation zone. We explored the angle effect on electrode-displacement elastography to measure the ablation zone. Phantoms embedded with meatballs were fabricated and then ablated using an RFA system to simulate RFA-induced lesions. For each phantom, a commercial ultrasound scanner with a 7.5 MHz linear probe was used to acquire raw image data at different angles, ranging from 30° to 90° at increments of 10°, to construct electrode-displacement images and facilitate comparisons with tissue section images. The results revealed that the ablation regions detected using electrode-displacement elastography were highly correlated with those from tissue section images when the angle was between 30° and 60°. However, the boundaries of lesions were difficult to distinguish, when the angle was larger than 60°. The experimental findings suggest that angle selection should be considered to achieve reliable electrode-displacement elastography to describe ablation zones.

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          Elastography: a quantitative method for imaging the elasticity of biological tissues.

          We describe a new method for quantitative imaging of strain and elastic modulus distributions in soft tissues. The method is based on external tissue compression, with subsequent computation of the strain profile along the transducer axis, which is derived from cross-correlation analysis of pre- and post-compression A-line pairs. The strain profile can then be converted to an elastic modulus profile by measuring the stresses applied by the compressing device and applying certain corrections for the nonuniform stress field. We report initial results of several phantom and excised animal tissue experiments which demonstrate the ability of this technique to quantitatively image strain and elastic modulus distributions with good resolution, sensitivity and with diminished speckle. We discuss several potential clinical uses of this technique.

            Author and article information

            1School of Electronic Information Engineering, Tianjin University, Tianjin 300072, China
            2Department of Medical Imaging and Radiological Sciences, College of Medicine, Chang Gung University, 259 Wen-Hwa 1st Road, Kwei-Shan, Taoyuan, Taoyuan County 33302, Taiwan
            3Biomedical Engineering Center, College of Life Science and Bioengineering, Beijing University of Technology, Beijing 100124, China
            4Graduate Institute of Clinical Medical Sciences, College of Medicine, Chang Gung University, Taoyuan 33302, Taiwan
            5Department of Electrical Engineering, Chang Gung University, Taoyuan 33302, Taiwan
            6Institute for Radiological Research, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital at Linkou, Chang Gung University, Taoyuan 33302, Taiwan
            Author notes

            Academic Editor: Tobias De Zordo

            Biomed Res Int
            Biomed Res Int
            BioMed Research International
            Hindawi Publishing Corporation
            27 May 2014
            : 2014
            Copyright © 2014 Jingjing Xia et al.

            This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

            Funded by: National Science Council Taiwan
            Award ID: NSC 102-2221-E-182-008
            Funded by: Chang Gung Memorial Hospital
            Award ID: CMRPD1C0711
            Funded by: Chang Gung Medical Research Program
            Award ID: CMRPD1C0661
            Funded by: Chang Gung Medical Research Program
            Award ID: CMRPD1C0641
            Research Article


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