Five-dimensional ultrasound system for soft tissue visualization

Nishikant P. Deshmukh, Jesus J. Caban, Russell H. Taylor, Gregory D. Hager, Emad M. Boctor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Purpose: A five-dimensional ultrasound (US) system is proposed as a real-time pipeline involving fusion of 3D B-mode data with the 3D ultrasound elastography (USE) data as well as visualization of these fused data and a real-time update capability over time for each consecutive scan. 3D B-mode data assist in visualizing the anatomy of the target organ, and 3D elastography data adds strain information. Methods: We investigate the feasibility of such a system and show that an end-to-end real-time system, from acquisition to visualization, can be developed. We present a system that consists of (a) a real-time 3D elastography algorithm based on a normalized cross-correlation (NCC) computation on a GPU; (b) real-time 3D B-mode acquisition and network transfer; (c) scan conversion of 3D elastography and B-mode volumes (if acquired by 4D wobbler probe); and (d) visualization software that fuses, visualizes, and updates 3D B-mode and 3D elastography data in real time. Results: We achieved a speed improvement of 4.45-fold for the threaded version of the NCC-based 3D USE versus the non-threaded version. The maximum speed was 79 volumes/s for 3D scan conversion. In a phantom, we validated the dimensions of a 2.2-cm-diameter sphere scan-converted to B-mode volume. Also, we validated the 5D US system visualization transfer function and detected 1- and 2-cm spherical objects (phantom lesion). Finally, we applied the system to a phantom consisting of three lesions to delineate the lesions from the surrounding background regions of the phantom. Conclusion: A 5D US system is achievable with real-time performance. We can distinguish between hard and soft areas in a phantom using the transfer functions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1927-1939
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal of Computer Assisted Radiology and Surgery
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2015


  • 3D elastography
  • 3D scan conversion
  • Computer graphics
  • Elastography
  • Five-dimensional ultrasound system
  • GPU
  • Medical imaging
  • OpenGL
  • Ultrasound
  • Visualization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Health Informatics
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design


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