12 March 2007 Measurement of mechanical properties of homogeneous tissue with ultrasonically induced shear waves
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Fundamental mechanical properties of tissue are altered by many diseases. Regional and systemic diseases can cause changes in tissue properties. Liver stiffness is caused by cirrhosis and fibrosis. Vascular wall stiffness and tone are altered by smoking, diabetes and other diseases. Measurement of tissue mechanical properties has historically been done with palpation. However palpation is subjective, relative, and not quantitative or reproducible. Elastography in which strain is measured due to stress application gives a qualitative estimate of Young's modulus at low frequency. We have developed a method that takes advantage of the fact that the wave equation is local and shear wave propagation depends only on storage and loss moduli in addition to density, which does not vary much in soft tissues. Our method is called shearwave dispersion ultrasonic velocity measurement (SDUV). The method uses ultrasonic radiation force to produce repeated motion in tissue that induces shear waves to propagate. The shear wave propagation speed is measured with pulse echo ultrasound as a function of frequency of the shear wave. The resulting velocity dispersion curve is fit with a Voight model to determine the elastic and viscous moduli of the tissue. Results indicate accurate and precise measurements are possible using this "noninvasive biopsy" method. Measurements in beef along and across the fibers are consistent with the literature values.
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James F. Greenleaf, Shigao Chen, "Measurement of mechanical properties of homogeneous tissue with ultrasonically induced shear waves", Proc. SPIE 6513, Medical Imaging 2007: Ultrasonic Imaging and Signal Processing, 65130F (12 March 2007); doi: 10.1117/12.706804; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.706804

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