Inadequate visualization of ultrasonic images leads to increased exam time, decreased patient throughput, diminished quality or indeterminate diagnosis, or referral of the patient to other imaging procedures. Alternative imaging methods generally increase costs and/or expose the patient to invasive or potentially hazardous imaging procedures. In this application, we propose a new ultrasonic imaging method, called Short-Lag Spatial Coherence (SLSC) imaging, that demonstrates the ability to greatly suppress acoustical clutter and significantly improve ultrasonic imaging quality. We present preliminary data demonstrating the success of this technique in human livers and hearts. We propose to build real-time SLSC imaging systems and analyze them in key tasks in echocardiography. In addition, we propose to build the mathematical framework to describe this imaging technique and to develop advanced SLSC imaging methods. We propose clinical studies in stress echocardiography to evaluate the potential of this technique in visualizing endocardial borders in difficult-to-image patients.

Public Health Relevance

Poor image quality in ultrasonic imaging is detrimental to diagnosing heart problems in patients. We have developed a new imaging method that reduces image noise. We propose to evaluate these techniques in human studies to determine the potential of this method in detecting the heart walls in the presence of noise.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB)
Research Project (R01)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1-BMIT-J (01))
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Liu, Christina
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Stanford University
Schools of Medicine
United States
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Hyun, Dongwoon; Abou-Elkacem, Lotfi; Perez, Valerie A et al. (2018) Improved Sensitivity in Ultrasound Molecular Imaging With Coherence-Based Beamforming. IEEE Trans Med Imaging 37:241-250
Hyun, Dongwoon; Crowley, Anna Lisa C; Dahl, Jeremy J (2017) Efficient Strategies for Estimating the Spatial Coherence of Backscatter. IEEE Trans Ultrason Ferroelectr Freq Control 64:500-513
Lediju Bell, Muyinatu A; Dahl, Jeremy J; Trahey, Gregg E (2015) Resolution and brightness characteristics of short-lag spatial coherence (SLSC) images. IEEE Trans Ultrason Ferroelectr Freq Control 62:1265-76
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