Identifying and delineating invisible anatomical and pathological details during surgery guides surgical procedures in real time. Various intraoperative imaging modalities have been increasingly employed to minimize such surgical risks as anatomical changes, damage to normal tissues, and human error. However, current methods provide only structural information, which cannot identify critical structures such as blood vessels. The logical next step is an intraoperative imaging modality that can provide functional information. Here, we have successfully developed a photoacoustic (PA) image-guided navigation system for surgery by integrating a position tracking system and a real-time clinical photoacoustic/ultrasound (PA/US) imaging system. PA/US images were acquired in real time and overlaid on pre-acquired cross-sectional magnetic resonance (MR) images. In the overlaid images, PA images represent the optical absorption characteristics of the surgical field, while US and MR images represent the morphological structure of surrounding tissues. To test the feasibility of the system, we prepared a tissue mimicking phantom which contained two samples, methylene blue as a contrast agent and water as a control. We acquired real-time overlaid PA/US/MR images of the phantom, which were well-matched with the optical and morphological properties of the samples. The developed system is the first approach to a novel intraoperative imaging technology based on PA imaging, and we believe that the system can be utilized in various surgical environments in the near future, improving the efficacy of surgical guidance.
Sara Park, Jongseong Jang, Jeesu Kim, Young Soo Kim, and Chulhong Kim, "Photoacoustic image-guided navigation system for surgery (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10064, Photons Plus Ultrasound: Imaging and Sensing 2017, 100640E (Presented at SPIE BiOS: January 29, 2017; Published: 24 April 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2251292.5379284462001.
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