Fast super resolution ultrasound imaging using the erythrocytes

Jørgen Arendt Jensen, Mikkel Schou, Sofie Bech Andersen, Stinne Byrholdt Søgaard, Charlotte Mehlin Sørensen, Michael Bachmann Nielsen, Carsten Gundlach, Hans Martin Kjer, Anders Bjorholm Dahl, Matthias Bo Stuart, Borislav Gueorguiev Tomov

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Super resolution (SR) imaging is currently conducted using fragile ultrasound contrast agents. This precludes using the full acoustic pressure range, and the distribution of bubbles has to be sparse for them to be isolated for SR imaging. Images have to be acquired over minutes to accumulate enough positions for visualizing the vasculature. A new method for SUper Resolution imaging using the Erythrocytes (SURE) as targets is introduced, which makes it possible to maximize the emitted pressure for good signal-to-noise ratios. The abundant number of erythrocyte targets make acquisition fast, and the SURE images can be acquired in seconds. A Verasonics Vantage 256 scanner was used in combination with a GE L8-18iD linear array probe operated at 10 MHz for a wavelength of 150 μm. A 12 emissions synthetic aperture ultrasound sequence was employed to scan the kidney of a Sprague-Dawley rat for 24 seconds to visualize its vasculature. An ex vivo micro-CT image using the contrast agent Microfil was also acquired at a voxel size of 22.6 μm for validating the SURE images. The SURE image revealed vessels with a size down to 29 μm, five times smaller than the ultrasound wavelength, and the dense grid of vessels in the full kidney was reliably shown for scan times between 1 to 24 seconds. Visually the SURE images revealed the same vasculature as the micro-CT images. SURE images are acquired in seconds rather than minutes without contrast injection for easy clinical use, and they can be measured at full regulatory levels for pressure, intensity, and probe temperature.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMedical Imaging 2022: Ultrasonic Imaging and Tomography
Number of pages7
PublisherSPIE - International Society for Optical Engineering
Publication date2022
Article number120380E
ISBN (Print)9781510649514
Publication statusPublished - 2022
EventSPIE Medical Imaging 2022 - San Diego, United States
Duration: 21 Feb 202227 Mar 2022


ConferenceSPIE Medical Imaging 2022
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego
Internet address
SeriesProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering


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