JP2006102332A - Ultrasonic diagnostic equipment - Google Patents

Ultrasonic diagnostic equipment Download PDF

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Publication number
JP2006102332A
JP2006102332A JP2004295529A JP2004295529A JP2006102332A JP 2006102332 A JP2006102332 A JP 2006102332A JP 2004295529 A JP2004295529 A JP 2004295529A JP 2004295529 A JP2004295529 A JP 2004295529A JP 2006102332 A JP2006102332 A JP 2006102332A
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Japan
Prior art keywords
apodization
ultrasonic
diagnostic apparatus
ultrasonic diagnostic
beam
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Pending
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JP2004295529A
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JP2006102332A5 (en
Inventor
Teruo Anzai
輝夫 安齋
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Ge Medical Systems Global Technology Co Llc
ジーイー・メディカル・システムズ・グローバル・テクノロジー・カンパニー・エルエルシー
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Application filed by Ge Medical Systems Global Technology Co Llc, ジーイー・メディカル・システムズ・グローバル・テクノロジー・カンパニー・エルエルシー filed Critical Ge Medical Systems Global Technology Co Llc
Priority to JP2004295529A priority Critical patent/JP2006102332A/en
Publication of JP2006102332A publication Critical patent/JP2006102332A/en
Publication of JP2006102332A5 publication Critical patent/JP2006102332A5/ja
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Abstract

<P>PROBLEM TO BE SOLVED: To provide ultrasonic diagnostic equipment which enables sufficient dye photographing in imaging photographing. <P>SOLUTION: The ultrasonic diagnostic equipment includes changing means (6, 18, 20) for changing the apodization of an ultrasonic beam; and a display means (16) for graphically displaying the state of the apodization together with a tomographic image. The changing means change the apodization by selection among a plurality of prepared candidates. The plurality of candidates are prepared by each focus position of the ultrasonic beam. The display means displays the state of the apodization as the shape of the ultrasonic beam in a sound field. The shape of the ultrasonic beams is measured by a schlieren method. <P>COPYRIGHT: (C)2006,JPO&NCIPI

Description

  The present invention relates to an ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus, and more particularly, to an ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus that scans a subject into which a contrast medium has been injected with an ultrasonic beam to capture a tomographic image.

The ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus scans an imaging range with an ultrasonic beam and captures a tomographic image. When enhancing the contrast of the region of interest, imaging using a contrast agent is performed (see, for example, Patent Document 1).
JP 2003-230559 A (page 3-4, FIG. 1)

  In contrast imaging, the focus position and sound pressure of the ultrasound beam are adjusted so that the region of interest is appropriately shaded, but this is not always sufficient because the contrast effect is patient-dependent. The shadow effect cannot be increased.

  Accordingly, an object of the present invention is to realize an ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus capable of performing sufficient staining in contrast imaging.

  The present invention for solving the above-mentioned problems is an ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus for taking a tomographic image by scanning a subject into which a contrast medium has been injected with an ultrasonic beam, and changing the apodization of the ultrasonic beam An ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus comprising: means; and display means for graphically displaying an apodization state together with a tomographic image.

It is preferable that the changing means changes the apodization by selecting from a plurality of candidates prepared in advance from the viewpoint of facilitating the change of the apodization.
It is preferable that the plurality of candidates are prepared for each focus position of the ultrasonic beam in terms of adapting to changes in the depth of the region of interest.

It is preferable that the display means displays the apodization state as the shape of the ultrasonic beam in the sound field from the viewpoint of facilitating confirmation of the apodization state.
It is preferable that the shape of the ultrasonic beam is a shape measured by the Schlieren method from the viewpoint of appropriately showing the beam shape.

It is preferable to provide storage means for storing the apodization and focus position after the change is confirmed as a preset value from the viewpoint that the preset value can be reused.
It is preferable that the preset value includes the sound pressure of the ultrasonic beam in terms of enhancing the contents of the preset value.

  It is preferable that the preset value is managed for each subject in order to facilitate the next imaging of the subject.

  According to the present invention, the ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus includes the changing unit that changes the apodization of the ultrasonic beam and the display unit that graphically displays the apodization state together with the tomographic image. An ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus that can be performed can be realized.

  The best mode for carrying out the invention will be described below in detail with reference to the drawings. Note that the present invention is not limited to the best mode for carrying out the invention. FIG. 1 shows a block diagram of the ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus. This apparatus is an example of the best mode for carrying out the invention. An example of the best mode for carrying out the present invention relating to an ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus is shown by the configuration of the present apparatus.

  As shown in FIG. 1, the present apparatus has an ultrasonic probe 2. The ultrasonic probe 2 has an ultrasonic transducer array. Each ultrasonic transducer in the ultrasonic transducer array is made of a piezoelectric material such as PZT (titanium (Ti) zirconate (Zr) acid) ceramics.

  The ultrasonic probe 2 is used in contact with the object 4 by the user. A contrast agent 42 is injected into the object 4 in advance. The ultrasonic probe 2 is connected to the transmission / reception unit 6. The transmission / reception unit 6 sends a drive signal to the ultrasonic probe 2 to transmit an ultrasonic beam. The transmission / reception unit 6 also receives an echo signal received by the ultrasonic probe 2.

  The transmission / reception unit 6 performs scanning as shown in FIG. 2, for example. That is, the fan-shaped two-dimensional region 206 is scanned in the θ direction by the sound ray 202 extending in the z direction from the radiation point 200, and so-called sector scan is performed. The sound ray corresponds to the central axis of the ultrasonic beam.

  When the transmission and reception openings are formed by using a part of the ultrasonic transducer array, the openings can be sequentially moved along the array to perform scanning as shown in FIG. 3, for example. That is, the sound ray 202 emitted in the z direction from the radiation point 200 is translated along the linear locus 204 to scan the rectangular two-dimensional region 206 in the x direction, and so-called linear scan is performed.

  When the ultrasonic transducer array is a so-called convex array formed along an arc extending in the ultrasonic wave transmission direction, for example, as shown in FIG. As described above, the so-called convex scan can be performed by moving the radiation point 200 of the sound ray 202 along the arc-shaped locus 204 and scanning the fan-shaped two-dimensional region 206 in the θ direction.

  The transmission / reception unit 6 performs focusing and apodization for forming an ultrasonic beam having the sound ray 202 as a central axis. Focusing is performed by giving a time difference to transmission / reception signals of a plurality of ultrasonic transducers constituting the opening. Apodization is performed by assigning weights to transmission / reception signals of a plurality of ultrasonic transducers constituting the aperture. The focus position of the ultrasonic beam is determined by focusing. Apodization determines the shape of the ultrasonic beam.

  The transmission / reception unit 6 is connected to the echo processing unit 10. The echo reception signal for each sound ray output from the transmission / reception unit 6 is input to the echo processing unit 10. The echo processing unit 10 processes the echo signal to form an image signal for each sound ray.

  The echo processing unit 10 is connected to the image processing unit 14. The image processing unit 14 generates an image based on the image signal input from the echo processing unit 10. When generating an image, the image processing unit 14 converts the arrangement of image signals from a ray-sequential arrangement to a lattice arrangement in a two-dimensional space by scan conversion.

  A display unit 16 is connected to the image processing unit 14. The display unit 16 displays the image output from the image processing unit 14. The display unit 16 is configured by a graphic display or the like. The display unit 16 is an example of display means in the present invention.

  A control unit 18 is connected to the transmission / reception unit 6, the echo processing unit 10, the image processing unit 14, and the display unit 16. The control unit 18 gives control signals to these units to control their operation. Various notification signals are input to the control unit 18 from each part to be controlled. Imaging of an ultrasonic image is performed under the control of the control unit 18.

  Beam forming in the transmission / reception unit 6 is also controlled by the control unit 18. That is, the focusing and apodization of the ultrasonic beam are controlled by the control unit 18. The sound pressure of the ultrasonic beam is also controlled by the control unit 18. The control unit 18 stores control data (data) for performing these controls in a memory.

  Since the reflectivity of the ultrasonic wave is different between the contrast medium and the body tissue, the scan for imaging the contrast medium and the scan for imaging the body tissue are performed with different beam forming and sound pressure. Hereinafter, a scan for imaging a contrast agent is also referred to as a contrast scan, and a scan for imaging a body tissue is also referred to as a B-mode scan.

  An operation unit 20 is connected to the control unit 18. The operation unit 20 is operated by a user and inputs appropriate commands and information to the control unit 18. The operation unit 20 includes, for example, a keyboard, a pointing device, and other operation tools.

  In this apparatus, the focusing, apodization, and sound pressure of the ultrasonic beam during contrast scanning can be adjusted by the user. This will be described below.

  FIG. 5 schematically shows an example of a display screen during contrast scanning. As shown in the figure, an image 402 of a region stained with a contrast agent is displayed on the screen. The screen also displays an image 404 indicating the apodization state and an index 406 indicating the focus setting position. Hereinafter, an image of a region stained with a contrast agent is also referred to as a dyed image, an image indicating an apodization state is referred to as an apodization image, and an index indicating a focus setting position is also referred to as a focus index.

  Contrast scanning can be performed alone or in combination with B-mode scanning. When used together with the B-mode scan, the B-mode image is displayed as a background image of the dyed image 402. Thereby, the positional relationship between the dyed image 402 and the body tissue becomes clear.

  The apodization image 404 is an image showing the shape of the ultrasonic beam in the sound ray direction in the sound field. As shown in the figure, the beam shape focused at the focus position determined by focusing with the width and length determined by the apodization is shown. To express. The width represents the degree of focus, and the length represents the focus range.

  Since the apodization result is reflected in such a beam shape, it is suitable as an image representing the apodization state, and it is convenient for intuitively recognizing the effect of the apodization.

  Note that the apodization state may be displayed not as a beam shape but as a weighted profile of a transmission signal, a reception signal, or a transmission / reception signal at the aperture as shown in FIG. Hereinafter, an example in which the state of apodization is represented by a beam shape will be described, but the same applies to the case of representing it by a weighting profile.

  The shape of the ultrasonic beam is measured in advance by, for example, the Schlieren method and stored in the memory. By using the shape measured by the Schlieren method, the beam shape can be appropriately shown.

  The memory stores a plurality of beam shapes corresponding to a plurality of apodizations. The beam shape is also measured and stored for each of a plurality of focus positions. Thereby, it is possible to cope with a change in the depth of the attention site.

  The focusing, apodization, and sound pressure control of the ultrasonic beam during contrast scanning are first performed based on the initial setting value of the control data. Therefore, the apodization image 404 and the focus index 406 initially indicate the beam forming and focus positions by the initial setting.

  The user observes the display screen and checks whether the dyed image 402 is sufficiently dyed. If the dyed image 402 is sufficiently dyed, scanning is continued as it is, but if sufficient dyeing is not obtained, focusing, apodization or sound pressure of the ultrasonic beam is changed. These changes are performed by giving a command to the control unit 18 through the operation unit 20. A portion including the transmission / reception unit 6, the control unit 18, and the operation unit 20 is an example of a changing unit in the present invention.

  When the B mode scan is used in combination, the ultrasonic beam focusing, apodization, and sound pressure change are effective only for the contrast scan, and are invalid for the B mode scan.

  FIG. 7 shows an example of a display screen when changing the apodization. In the figure, (b) is an initial setting state, and (a) and (c) are states in which the apodization is changed in the direction in which the focus range of the ultrasonic beam is increased and decreased, respectively.

  As shown in (a), the focus range in the depth direction can be expanded by changing the apodization in the direction in which the focus range of the ultrasonic beam is increased. When the focusing range in the initial setting is too narrow compared with the distribution range of the contrast agent, an appropriate stained image 402 can be obtained by such a change in apodization. An increase in the focus range is accompanied by an increase in the beam width.

  As shown in (c), the focus range in the depth direction can be narrowed by changing the apodization in the direction to reduce the focus range of the ultrasonic beam. When the in-focus range in the initial setting is too wide compared to the distribution range of the contrast agent, an appropriate stained image 402 can be obtained by such a change in apodization. Note that a decrease in the focus range is accompanied by a decrease in the beam width.

  Such apodization change is performed by selecting from a plurality of control data stored in the memory. Note that the number of apodization candidates is not limited to three centered on the initial state as described above, and may be an appropriate number such as five or seven. Since the apodization is changed by selecting from a plurality of candidates prepared in advance, the apodization can be easily changed.

  FIG. 8 shows an example of a display screen when the focusing is changed. In FIG. 5, (b) is an initial setting state, and (a) and (c) are states in which focusing is changed in a direction in which the focus position of the ultrasonic beam is moved away and in a direction in which the focusing position is changed. The focusing is changed based on the position change of the focus index 406 by the user.

  As shown in (a), it is possible to focus on the far field by changing the focusing in the direction of moving away the focus position of the ultrasonic beam. When the distribution point of the contrast agent is far from the focus position in the initial setting, an appropriate stained image 402 can be obtained by such focusing change.

  As shown in (c), it is possible to focus on the near field by changing the focusing in a direction to bring the focus position of the ultrasonic beam closer. When the distribution location of the contrast agent is closer than the initial focus position, an appropriate stained image 402 can be obtained by such a focusing change.

  Such a focusing candidate is selected by selecting from a plurality of control data stored in the memory. Note that the number of focusing candidates is not limited to three with the initial state as the center as described above, and may be an appropriate number such as five or seven. In each focusing, it is possible to adjust the apodization as necessary.

  In the initial setting or the adjustment of apodization or focusing as described above, when the sensitivity of rendering the dyed image 402 is not appropriate, the sound pressure is increased or decreased so that a dyed image with appropriate sensitivity can be obtained.

  In this way, apodization, focusing and sound pressure are determined, and contrast scanning is continued under this condition. These determined conditions are stored in the memory as preset values. Since the preset value includes the sound pressure of the ultrasonic beam, the contents of the preset value are enriched. The control unit 18 is an example of a storage unit in the present invention.

  The preset value is used as an initial setting value at the next contrast scan. Thereby, an appropriate dyed image can be obtained from the beginning. By managing the preset value for each patient, that is, the ID (identification) of the subject, rediagnosis of the same patient can be performed efficiently.

1 is a block diagram of an ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus as an example of the best mode for carrying out the present invention. It is a figure which shows the concept of sound ray scanning. It is a figure which shows the concept of sound ray scanning. It is a figure which shows the concept of sound ray scanning. It is a figure which shows the display screen at the time of contrast scan. It is a figure which shows the display screen at the time of contrast scan. It is a figure which shows the display screen at the time of contrast scan. It is a figure which shows the display screen at the time of contrast scan.

Explanation of symbols

2: Ultrasonic probe 4: Object 6: Transmission / reception unit 10: Echo processing unit 14: Image processing unit 16: Display unit 18: Control unit 20: Operation unit 401: Stained image 404: Apodization image 406: Focus index

Claims (8)

  1. An ultrasound diagnostic apparatus that scans a subject into which a contrast agent is injected with an ultrasound beam and captures a tomogram,
    A changing means for changing the apodization of the ultrasonic beam;
    Display means for graphically displaying the apodization state together with the tomographic image;
    An ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus comprising:
  2. The changing means changes the apodization by selecting from a plurality of candidates prepared in advance;
    The ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus according to claim 1.
  3. The plurality of candidates are prepared for each focus position of the ultrasonic beam.
    The ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus according to claim 2.
  4. The display means displays the state of apodization as the shape of an ultrasonic beam in a sound field;
    The ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus is any one of claims 1 to 3.
  5. The shape of the ultrasonic beam is a shape measured by a Schlieren method,
    The ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus according to claim 4.
  6. Storage means for storing the apodization and focus position after the change is confirmed as a preset value;
    The ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus according to any one of claims 1 to 5, further comprising:
  7. The preset value includes the sound pressure of the ultrasonic beam;
    The ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus according to claim 6.
  8. The preset value is managed for each subject.
    The ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus according to claim 6 or 7, wherein
JP2004295529A 2004-10-08 2004-10-08 Ultrasonic diagnostic equipment Pending JP2006102332A (en)

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Cited By (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
JP2009142474A (en) * 2007-12-14 2009-07-02 Ge Medical Systems Global Technology Co Llc Ultrasonic imaging apparatus
JP2011004909A (en) * 2009-06-25 2011-01-13 Aloka Co Ltd Ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus
JP2012239647A (en) * 2011-05-19 2012-12-10 Hitachi Aloka Medical Ltd Ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus

Citations (7)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
JPS56102231A (en) * 1980-01-18 1981-08-15 Tokyo Shibaura Electric Co Ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus
JPS6358255A (en) * 1986-08-29 1988-03-14 Yokogawa Medical Syst Ltd Ultrasonic visualizing device
JPH06154215A (en) * 1992-11-25 1994-06-03 Matsushita Electric Ind Co Ltd Ultrasonic diagnosing apparatus
JPH11290318A (en) * 1998-04-10 1999-10-26 Toshiba Corp Ultrasonic diagnostic system
JP2001327505A (en) * 2000-05-22 2001-11-27 Toshiba Corp Ultrasonic diagnostic device
JP2002238902A (en) * 2001-02-14 2002-08-27 Ge Medical Systems Global Technology Co Llc Ultrasonic transmission method and ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus
JP2003175038A (en) * 2001-12-12 2003-06-24 Hitachi Medical Corp Ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus

Patent Citations (7)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
JPS56102231A (en) * 1980-01-18 1981-08-15 Tokyo Shibaura Electric Co Ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus
JPS6358255A (en) * 1986-08-29 1988-03-14 Yokogawa Medical Syst Ltd Ultrasonic visualizing device
JPH06154215A (en) * 1992-11-25 1994-06-03 Matsushita Electric Ind Co Ltd Ultrasonic diagnosing apparatus
JPH11290318A (en) * 1998-04-10 1999-10-26 Toshiba Corp Ultrasonic diagnostic system
JP2001327505A (en) * 2000-05-22 2001-11-27 Toshiba Corp Ultrasonic diagnostic device
JP2002238902A (en) * 2001-02-14 2002-08-27 Ge Medical Systems Global Technology Co Llc Ultrasonic transmission method and ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus
JP2003175038A (en) * 2001-12-12 2003-06-24 Hitachi Medical Corp Ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus

Cited By (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
JP2009142474A (en) * 2007-12-14 2009-07-02 Ge Medical Systems Global Technology Co Llc Ultrasonic imaging apparatus
JP2011004909A (en) * 2009-06-25 2011-01-13 Aloka Co Ltd Ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus
JP2012239647A (en) * 2011-05-19 2012-12-10 Hitachi Aloka Medical Ltd Ultrasonic diagnostic apparatus

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