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A new shear wave imaging system for ultrasound elastography.

ABSTRACT

Ultrasound elastography is able to provide a non-invasive measurement of tissue elasticity properties. Shear wave imaging (SWI) technique is a quantitative method for tissue stiffness assessment. However, traditional SWI implementations cannot acquire 2D quantitative images of tissue elasticity distribution. In this study, a new shear wave imaging system is proposed and evaluated. Detailed delineation of hardware and image processing algorithms are presented. Programmable devices are selected to support flexible control of the system and the image processing algorithms. Analytic signal based cross-correlation method and a Radon transform based shear wave speed determination method are proposed with parallel computation ability. Tissue mimicking phantom imaging, and in vitro imaging measurements are conducted to demonstrate the performance of the proposed system. The system has the ability to provide a new choice for quantitative mapping of the tissue elasticity, and has good potential to be implemented into commercial ultrasound scanner.