Motion Magnification in Robotic Sonography: Enabling Pulsation-Aware Artery Segmentation

by   Dianye Huang, et al.

Ultrasound (US) imaging is widely used for diagnosing and monitoring arterial diseases, mainly due to the advantages of being non-invasive, radiation-free, and real-time. In order to provide additional information to assist clinicians in diagnosis, the tubular structures are often segmented from US images. To improve the artery segmentation accuracy and stability during scans, this work presents a novel pulsation-assisted segmentation neural network (PAS-NN) by explicitly taking advantage of the cardiac-induced motions. Motion magnification techniques are employed to amplify the subtle motion within the frequency band of interest to extract the pulsation signals from sequential US images. The extracted real-time pulsation information can help to locate the arteries on cross-section US images; therefore, we explicitly integrated the pulsation into the proposed PAS-NN as attention guidance. Notably, a robotic arm is necessary to provide stable movement during US imaging since magnifying the target motions from the US images captured along a scan path is not manually feasible due to the hand tremor. To validate the proposed robotic US system for imaging arteries, experiments are carried out on volunteers' carotid and radial arteries. The results demonstrated that the PAS-NN could achieve comparable results as state-of-the-art on carotid and can effectively improve the segmentation performance for small vessels (radial artery).


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