Acoustic angiography is a contrast-enhanced, superharmonic microvascular imaging method. It has shown the capability of high-resolution and high-contrast-to-tissue-ratio (CTR) imaging for vascular structure near tumor. Dual-frequency ultrasound transducers and arrays are usually used for this new imaging technique. Stacked-type dual-frequency transducers have been developed for this vascular imaging method by exciting injected microbubble contrast agent (MCA) in the vessels with low-frequency (1-5 MHz), moderate power ultrasound burst waves and receiving the superharmonic responses from MCA by a high-frequency receiver (>10 MHz). The main challenge of the conventional dual-frequency transducers is a limited penetration depth (<25 mm) due to the insufficient receiving sensitivity for highfrequency harmonic signal detection. A receiver with a high receiving sensitivity spanning a wide superharmonic frequency range (3rd to 6th) enables selectable bubble harmonic detection considering the required penetration depth. Here, we develop a new dual-frequency transducer composed of a 2 MHz 1-3 composite transmitter and a polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) receiver with a receiving frequency range of 4-12 MHz for adjustable harmonic imaging. The developed transducer was tested for harmonic responses from a microbubble-injected vessel-mimicking tube positioned 45 mm away. Despite the long imaging distance (45 mm), the prototype transducer detected clear harmonic response with the contrast-to-noise ratio of 6-20 dB and the -6 dB axial resolution of 200-350 μm for imaging a 200 um-diameter cellulose tube filled with microbubbles.
Jinwook Kim, Brooks D. Lindsey, Sibo Li, Paul A. Dayton, and Xiaoning Jiang, "Dual-frequency transducer with a wideband PVDF receiver for contrast-enhanced, adjustable harmonic imaging," Proc. SPIE 10170, Health Monitoring of Structural and Biological Systems 2017, 101700T (Presented at SPIE Smart Structures and Materials + Nondestructive Evaluation and Health Monitoring: March 27, 2017; Published: 5 April 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2258571.
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