Performance evaluation of ultrasonic Nakagami image in tissue characterization.


:Conventional ultrasonic B-mode images qualitatively describe tissue structures but are unsuitable for quantitative analyses of scatterer properties. We have recently developed an ultrasonic parametric imaging technique based on the Nakagami statistical distribution that is able to quantify scatterer concentrations. The aim of the present study is to further explore both the behavior of a Nakagami image in characterizing different scatterer structures at different signal-to-noise ratios (SNRs) and the feasibility of Nakagami imaging using a general commercial ultrasound scanner for tissue examinations. Simulations, experiments on a tissue-mimicking phantom and in vitro measurements on a muscle tissue before and after microwave treatment were carried out. The SNR and contrast-to-noise ratio (CNR) were estimated to quantify image performance. The results demonstrate that a Nakagami image can differentiate different scatterer concentrations for single, hypoechoic and hyperechoic targets. Also, a Nakagami image, when combined with an ultrasound scanner, can complement the B-scan to characterize tissue and to identify the region of interest with a larger CNR. However, the noise effect can degrade the performance of a Nakagami image. When the signal SNR decreased to 15 dB in simulations and to 8 dB in experiments, the CNR of the hyperechoic Nakagami image decreased by 4% and 27%, respectively, and that of the hypoechoic one decreased by 42% and 80%, respectively. These results indicate that a Nakagami image behaves well in identifying regions with high scatterer concentrations but does not perform well when both the scatterer concentration and SNR are low.


Ultrason Imaging


Ultrasonic imaging


Tsui PH,Yeh CK,Chang CC,Chen WS




Has Abstract


2008-04-01 00:00:00












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