This paper evaluates image enhancement and visualization techniques for pulsed terahertz (THz) images of tissue samples. Specifically, our research objective is to effectively differentiate between heterogeneous regions of breast tissues that contain tumors diagnosed as triple negative infiltrating ductal carcinoma (IDC). Tissue slices and blocks of varying thicknesses were prepared and scanned using our lab’s THz pulsed imaging system. One of the challenges we have encountered in visualizing the obtained images and differentiating between healthy and cancerous regions of the tissues is that most THz images have a low level of details and narrow contrast, making it difficult to accurately identify and visualize the margins around the IDC. To overcome this problem, we have applied and evaluated a number of image processing techniques to the scanned 3D THz images. In particular, we employed various spatial filtering and intensity transformation techniques to emphasize the small details in the images and adjust the image contrast. For each of these methods, we investigated how varying filter sizes and parameters affect the amount of enhancement applied to the images. Our experimentation shows that several image processing techniques are effective in producing THz images of breast tissue samples that contain distinguishable details, making further segmentation of the different image regions promising.
Yuhao Wu, Tyler Bowman, John Gauch, and Magda El-Shenawee, "Adaptive enhancement and visualization techniques for 3D THz images of breast cancer tumors," Proc. SPIE 9706, Optical Interactions with Tissue and Cells XXVII, 970602 (Presented at SPIE BiOS: February 14, 2016; Published: 7 March 2016); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2209706.
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