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High-Frame-Rate Speckle-Tracking Echocardiography

Abstract : Conventional echocardiography is the leading modality for noninvasive cardiac imaging. It has been recently illustrated that high-frame-rate echocardiography using diverging waves could improve cardiac assessment. The spatial resolution and contrast associated with this method are commonly improved by coherent compounding of steered beams. However, owing to fast tissue velocities in the myocardium, the summation process of successive diverging waves can lead to destructive interferences if motion compensation (MoCo) is not considered. Coherent compounding methods based on MoCo have demonstrated their potential to provide high-contrast B-mode cardiac images. Ultrafast speckle-tracking echocardiography (STE) based on common speckle-tracking algorithms could substantially benefit from this original approach. In this paper, we applied STE on high-frame-rate B-mode images obtained with a specific MoCo technique to quantify the 2-D motion and tissue velocities of the left ventricle. The method was first validated in vitro and then evaluated in vivo in the four-chamber view of 10 volunteers. High-contrast high-resolution B-mode images were constructed at 500 frames/s. The sequences were generated with a Verasonics scanner and a 2.5-MHz phased array. The 2-D motion was estimated with standard cross correlation combined with three different subpixel adjustment techniques. The estimated in vitro velocity vectors derived from STE were consistent with the expected values, with normalized errors ranging from 4% to 12% in the radial direction and from 10% to 20% in the cross-range direction. Global longitudinal strain of the left ventricle was also obtained from STE in 10 subjects and compared to the results provided by a clinical scanner: group means were not statistically different (p value = 0.33). The in vitro and in vivo results showed that MoCo enables preservation of the myocardial speckles and in turn allows high-frame-rate STE.
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Submitted on : Monday, February 22, 2021 - 3:51:07 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, February 24, 2021 - 3:19:06 AM

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Philippe Joos, Jonathan Porée, Hervé Liebgott, Didier Vray, Mathilde Baudet, et al.. High-Frame-Rate Speckle-Tracking Echocardiography. IEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics and Frequency Control, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, 2018, 65 (5), pp.720 - 728. ⟨10.1109/TUFFC.2018.2809553⟩. ⟨hal-01826096⟩

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