JP4119497B2 - Ultrasound diagnostic imaging equipment - Google Patents

Ultrasound diagnostic imaging equipment Download PDF

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Publication number
JP4119497B2
JP4119497B2 JP7005797A JP7005797A JP4119497B2 JP 4119497 B2 JP4119497 B2 JP 4119497B2 JP 7005797 A JP7005797 A JP 7005797A JP 7005797 A JP7005797 A JP 7005797A JP 4119497 B2 JP4119497 B2 JP 4119497B2
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Japan
Prior art keywords
dimensional
vessel
vascular
extraction
means
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JPH10262963A (en
Inventor
知直 川島
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オリンパス株式会社
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Description

[0001]
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
The present invention relates to an ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus that creates an ultrasonic tomographic image obtained by an ultrasonic transducer.
[0002]
[Prior art]
In recent years, an ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus that constructs a three-dimensional image from three-dimensional echo data obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to a living body has been proposed. Among these, in the apparatus disclosed in Japanese Patent Laid-Open No. 4-183446, the contours of a plurality of different tomographic images such as X-ray CT, MRI, and ultrasound are respectively extracted, while blood vessel information is extracted on the other hand, One stereo model image is displayed.
[0003]
With this configuration, it is possible to create a three-dimensional image of the affected area by utilizing the image extractability of various tomographic imaging apparatuses. However, this apparatus requires a plurality of different tomographic imaging means such as X-ray CT, MRI, and ultrasonic waves.
[0004]
Therefore, an ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus that extracts the contour of a portion of interest and blood vessels only from ultrasonic echo data has also been proposed. Among these, in the apparatus disclosed in Japanese Patent Application Laid-Open No. 6-254097, tissue information in a three-dimensional space and movement information of a moving body are obtained based on a received signal from an ultrasonic probe.
[0005]
In particular, when obtaining movement information, a Doppler phenomenon generated by a moving body such as a blood cell is used. Then, the contour image of the portion of interest is extracted from the tissue information, and the blood flow image is extracted from the movement information. Further, the projection processing is performed on the three-dimensional distribution information of the contour image and the blood flow image at each position while changing the viewpoint to generate a plurality of two-dimensional images.
[0006]
Such a configuration realizes a three-dimensional display in which a conventional B-mode image and a CFM (color flow mapping) image using the Doppler phenomenon are combined. Therefore, the three-dimensional structure of the portion of interest and the three-dimensional structure of the blood flow image can be observed at the same time, and for example, the relationship between the tumor and its nutritional blood vessels can be grasped.
[0007]
As an apparatus for obtaining this three-dimensional echo data, an ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus that transmits and receives ultrasonic waves into a living body while performing a three-dimensional scan such as a spiral scan combining a radial scan and a linear scan has been proposed. Yes.
[0008]
Among these, in the devices disclosed in JP-A-6-30937, JP-A-6-30938, and JP-A-8-56947, an ultrasonic vibrator is arranged at the tip and the opposite end is radial. A flexible shaft joined to the rotating shaft of the motor in the rotating portion and a ball screw whose end portion is joined to the rotating shaft of the stepping motor are provided.
[0009]
Then, the rotation of the ball screw causes the entire radial rotating portion to advance and retract via a member fitted to the ball screw, so that the motor, flexible shaft, and ultrasonic transducer also advance and retract while rotating themselves, thereby realizing spiral scanning.
[0010]
The rotation ratio of the ball screw with respect to the rotation of the ultrasonic transducer is a fixed value that can be set, and the ultrasonic transducer advances and retreats by a predetermined distance when it makes one rotation. Then, a plurality of continuous tomographic image data is acquired as three-dimensional echo data from the echo signal from the region to be examined.
[0011]
Furthermore, the apparatus disclosed in Japanese Patent Application Laid-Open No. 8-56947 has a configuration in which an ultrasonic transducer is provided in a flexible sheath of an ultrasonic probe, and the ultrasonic probe body is covered with an outer sheath. .
[0012]
[Problems to be solved by the invention]
By the way, when an ultrasonic probe is inserted into a blood vessel other than a blood vessel such as a pancreatic duct or bile duct and three-dimensional display is performed, it is important to grasp the positional relationship between these blood vessels and the tumor spreading therearound. It is. For example, grasping how much the tumor has spread around the bile duct is medically important from the viewpoint of determining the surgical resection range.
[0013]
In addition, there are cases where a blood vessel such as a portal vein runs in a complex manner around a blood vessel other than a blood vessel such as a bile duct, and these positions are used in diagnosis by a two-dimensional ultrasonic tomographic image. The doctor predicted the relationship, but this was a difficult task.
[0014]
In addition, for example, tumors often originate from vessels other than blood vessels such as pancreatic ducts and bile ducts, and distinguishing whether or not this tumor has reached blood vessels such as portal veins means knowing the possibility of metastasis. Medically very important. Further, not only reaching the blood vessels but also distinguishing tumor invasion into vessels other than blood vessels such as lymphatic vessels is extremely important medically in the sense of knowing the possibility of metastasis.
[0015]
Furthermore, the above-mentioned matters are the same in the neck where blood vessels such as the carotid artery and the jugular vein, esophagus other than the blood vessels, and blood vessels such as the trachea are close to each other. Therefore, it is desirable to be able to grasp the positional relationship between a vessel other than a blood vessel and a target tissue such as a tumor, or the positional relationship between a vessel other than the blood vessel and the blood vessel.
[0016]
More preferably, it is desirable to be able to grasp the mutual positional relationship between a vessel other than a blood vessel, a target tissue, and a blood vessel. Here, in the apparatus disclosed in Japanese Patent Laid-Open No. 6-254097, since a blood flow image is extracted from movement information of a moving body, a nutrient blood vessel such as a portal vein can be extracted as a blood flow. .
[0017]
However, since it is difficult to obtain movement information from vessels such as pancreatic duct, bile duct, lymphatic vessel and the like through which a liquid having a low movement speed such as pancreatic juice, bile, lymphatic fluid flows, it is difficult to extract them. In addition, it has been difficult to extract blood vessels such as the trachea and gastrointestinal tracts such as the stomach, esophagus, and intestine where fluid is not always flowing.
[0018]
Therefore, a first object of the present invention is to provide an ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus capable of grasping the positional relationship between a vascular vessel in which movement information is difficult to obtain and a target tissue or blood vessel.
[0019]
On the other hand, in the devices disclosed in JP-A-6-30937, JP-A-6-30938, and JP-A-8-56947, the ultrasonic vibrator is advanced and retracted by the rotation of the ball screw. The resolution in the direction of the probe insertion axis is affected by the pitch of the ball screw.
[0020]
In particular, when the ultrasonic beam emitted from the ultrasonic transducer is sufficiently sharp, the resolution is determined by the pitch of the ball screw. Apart from that, due to constraints such as rotation resistance of the flexible shaft, the time to capture echo signals from the ultrasonic transducer, and the time it takes to transmit and receive ultrasonic waves, the rotation time of the ultrasonic transducer is shortened, and per unit time There is a limit to increasing the number of tomographic image data (frame rate) to be captured in the image.
[0021]
In addition, if the frame rate is forcibly increased, rotation unevenness occurs at both ends of the flexible shaft, and the tomographic image data does not correctly reflect the rotation angle of the ultrasonic transducer.
[0022]
For this reason, the pitch of the ball screw is made finer in order to improve the resolution in the insertion axis direction, or the rotation ratio of the ball screw with respect to the rotation of the ultrasonic transducer is reduced, thereby shortening the advance / retreat distance per rotation of the ultrasonic transducer. Then, the advance / retreat is slow, and it takes time for the spiral scan.
[0023]
In particular, patients undergoing ultrasonography suffered from patient pain during the spiral scan because they had to stop breathing to avoid respiratory migration problems.
Therefore, a second object of the present invention is to provide an ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus that improves the resolution in the insertion axis direction of the ultrasonic probe without increasing the scanning time.
[0024]
In addition, in the devices disclosed in the above-mentioned JP-A-6-30937, JP-A-6-30938, and JP-A-8-56947, pulsations generated during spiral scanning, respiratory movement, Due to the body motion consisting of periodic motion such as peristalsis, blurring occurs between the tomographic image data, and the obtained 3D echo data becomes distorted. Therefore, a distorted 3D image is constructed from this 3D echo data. There was a problem that.
[0025]
Therefore, in conventional ultrasonography, a peristalsis inhibitor must be administered to suppress peristalsis, the patient must stop breathing during the scan, and it is effective for suppressing pulsation There was no means.
[0026]
Accordingly, a third object of the present invention is to provide an ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus capable of correcting blur between tomographic images due to body motion and acquiring good three-dimensional echo data without distortion.
[0027]
By the way, the ultrasonic probe of the apparatus disclosed in the above-mentioned JP-A-6-30937, JP-A-6-30938, and JP-A-8-56947 is actually inserted into the body, and spiral scanning is performed. When performing, an ultrasonic tomographic image is often acquired by projecting from the distal end of the endoscope through an insertion portion such as a forceps tube provided in the endoscope.
[0028]
Since the tip of a normal endoscope is provided with a bending mechanism that can change the optical system and the optical observation direction, the optical system can be used for spiral scanning of the tissue of interest and the ultrasonic transducer. While observing the state, the direction of the ultrasonic transducer can be easily changed so that tomographic image data of the tissue of interest can be obtained.
[0029]
However, in the above-described apparatus, it is often difficult to know where the ultrasonic transducer advances and retreats in the insertion axis direction of the ultrasonic probe until the spiral scan starts.
[0030]
For this reason, there is a problem that the target tissue deviates from the range in which tomographic image data can be acquired, and an echo signal from the target tissue may not be acquired as three-dimensional echo data.
[0031]
Further, in order to confirm whether or not an echo signal from the target tissue has been acquired in the three-dimensional echo data, the spiral scan is repeated while referring to the tomographic image data displayed during the ultrasonic examination, so that the examination time is prolonged. There was also a problem.
[0032]
Accordingly, a fourth object of the present invention is to provide an ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus capable of increasing the reliability when acquiring an echo signal from a tissue of interest as three-dimensional echo data and shortening the examination time. is there.
[0033]
[Means for Solving the Problems]
In order to achieve the first object, the following (1), (2), (3), (4), (5), (6), (7), (8), (9) , (10), (11), (12), (13).
(1) Ultrasound provided with first vascular extraction means for extracting a vascular vessel of a subject and three-dimensional processing means for constructing a three-dimensional image of the vascular vessel extracted by the first vascular extraction means In diagnostic imaging equipment,
The first vascular extraction means extracts the blood vessel from three-dimensional echo data composed of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and extracts a target tissue from the three-dimensional echo data. A three-dimensional image obtained by synthesizing the vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting unit and the target tissue extracted by the tissue extracting unit. It is characterized by constructing.
[0034]
According to the above configuration, the first vascular extraction means extracts a vascular vessel from three-dimensional echo data including echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject. The tissue extracting means extracts a target tissue from the three-dimensional echo data. The three-dimensional processing unit constructs a three-dimensional image obtained by synthesizing the vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting unit and the target tissue extracted by the tissue extracting unit.
[0035]
(2) The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to (1), wherein the three-dimensional processing means includes the vessel extracted by the first vessel extraction means and the attention extracted by the tissue extraction means. It is characterized by constructing a three-dimensional image in which tissues are color-coded and synthesized.
According to the above configuration, the three-dimensional processing means constructs a three-dimensional image in which the vascular extracted by the first vascular extraction means and the target tissue extracted by the tissue extracting means are color-coded and synthesized.
[0036]
(3) Super provided with a first vascular extraction means for extracting a vascular vessel of a subject and a three-dimensional processing means for constructing a three-dimensional image of the vascular vessel extracted by the first vascular extraction means. In the ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus,
The first vascular extraction means extracts a plurality of the vascular vessels from three-dimensional echo data comprising echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and the three-dimensional processing means A three-dimensional image is constructed by synthesizing a plurality of the vessels extracted by the first vessel extracting means.
According to the above configuration, the first vascular extraction means extracts a plurality of vascular vessels from the three-dimensional echo data composed of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject. The three-dimensional processing means constructs a three-dimensional image obtained by synthesizing the plurality of vessels extracted by the first vessel extracting means.
[0037]
(4) The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to (3), wherein the three-dimensional processing unit combines the plurality of vessels extracted by the first vessel extraction unit by color-coding each other. It is characterized by constructing a dimensional image.
According to the above configuration, the three-dimensional processing unit constructs a three-dimensional image in which a plurality of vessels extracted by the first vessel extracting unit are color-coded and synthesized.
[0038]
(5) Super provided with first vascular extraction means for extracting a vascular vessel of a subject and three-dimensional processing means for constructing a three-dimensional image of the vascular vessel extracted by the first vascular extraction means. In the ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus,
The first vascular extraction means extracts the vascular vessel from three-dimensional echo data composed of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and Second vessel extraction means for extracting a blood vessel from three-dimensional Doppler data comprising movement information of a moving body obtained by transmitting and receiving sound waves is provided, and the three-dimensional processing means is extracted by the first vessel extraction means. And constructing a three-dimensional image obtained by synthesizing the vessel and the vessel extracted by the second vessel extracting means.
[0039]
According to the above configuration, the first vascular extraction means extracts a vascular vessel from three-dimensional echo data including echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject. The second vascular extraction means extracts a vascular vessel from three-dimensional Doppler data including movement information of a moving body obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject. The three-dimensional processing means constructs a three-dimensional image obtained by synthesizing the vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting means and the vessel extracted by the second vessel extracting means.
[0040]
(6) The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to (5), wherein the three-dimensional processing unit is extracted by the vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting unit and the second vessel extracting unit. In addition, it is characterized in that a three-dimensional image is constructed by color-combining the vessels with each other.
According to the above configuration, the three-dimensional processing unit constructs a three-dimensional image obtained by color-coding the vascularity extracted by the first vascular extraction unit and the vascularity extracted by the second vascular extraction unit. To do.
[0041]
(7) Super provided with first vascular extraction means for extracting a vascular vessel of a subject and three-dimensional processing means for constructing a three-dimensional image of the vascular vessel extracted by the first vascular extraction means. In the ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus,
The first vascular extraction means extracts the blood vessel from three-dimensional echo data composed of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and extracts a target tissue from the three-dimensional echo data. And a second vascular extraction means for extracting a vascular vessel from three-dimensional Doppler data consisting of movement information of a moving body obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject,
The three-dimensional processing means includes the blood vessel extracted by the first blood vessel extracting means, the blood vessel extracted by the second blood vessel extracting means, and the tissue of interest extracted by the tissue extracting means. And a three-dimensional image obtained by combining the two.
[0042]
According to the above configuration, the first vascular extraction means extracts a vascular vessel from three-dimensional echo data including echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject. The tissue extracting means extracts a target tissue from the three-dimensional echo data. The second vascular extraction means extracts a vascular vessel from three-dimensional Doppler data including movement information of a moving body obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject. The three-dimensional processing means is a three-dimensional image obtained by combining the vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting means, the vessel extracted by the second vessel extracting means, and the target tissue extracted by the tissue extracting means. Build up.
[0043]
(8) The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to (7), wherein the three-dimensional processing means is extracted by the vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting means and the second vessel extracting means. It is characterized by constructing a three-dimensional image in which the vascularized vessel and the tissue of interest extracted by the tissue extraction means are color-coded and synthesized.
[0044]
According to the above configuration, the three-dimensional processing means includes the vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting means, the vessel extracted by the second vessel extracting means, and the target tissue extracted by the tissue extracting means. 3D images are constructed by color-coding each other.
[0045]
(9) The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to (1), (2), (3), (4), (5), (6), (7), (8), wherein the first pulse The tube extraction means is characterized in that the vessel is extracted based on a luminance difference from the surroundings of the three-dimensional echo data.
According to the above configuration, the first vascular extraction means extracts a vascular vessel based on a luminance difference from the surroundings of the three-dimensional echo data.
[0046]
(10) The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to (9), wherein the three-dimensional echo data includes a plurality of tomographic images including intensity information of echoes obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject. The first vascular extraction means includes extraction start point setting means for setting an extraction start point on a plurality of the tomographic image data, and the extraction start point on the plurality of the tomographic image data. The vessel is extracted by extending the scan line radially from the extraction start point set by the setting means and searching the vessel wall.
[0047]
According to the above configuration, the extraction start point setting unit sets the extraction start point on a plurality of tomographic image data. The first vascular extraction means extracts a vascular vessel by searching the vascular wall by extending the scan line radially from the extraction start point set by the extraction start point setting means on a plurality of tomographic image data. To do.
[0048]
(11) The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to (10), wherein the three-dimensional echo data includes a cross-section setting unit that sets a plurality of cross-sectional positions having gradations of the three-dimensional echo data, The first vascular extraction means extends the scan line within an extraction range determined by the position of the extraction start point set by the extraction start point setting means and the positions of the plurality of cross sections set by the cross section setting means. It is characterized by making it.
According to the above configuration, the cross-section setting means sets the positions of a plurality of cross-sections having the gradation of the three-dimensional echo data in the three-dimensional echo data. The first vascular extraction means extends the scan line within an extraction range determined by the position of the extraction start point set by the extraction start point setting means and the positions of a plurality of cross sections set by the cross section setting means.
[0049]
(12) The ultrasound diagnostic imaging apparatus according to (1), (2), (3), (4), (5), (6), (7), (8), (9), In the three-dimensional echo data, there is provided cross-section setting means for setting a position of a cross-section having a gradation of the three-dimensional echo data, and the three-dimensional processing means includes the cross-section set by the cross-section setting means A three-dimensional composite of the vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting means and the vessel extracted by the second vessel extracting means or the tissue of interest extracted by the tissue extracting means It is characterized by constructing an image.
[0050]
According to the above configuration, the cross-section setting means sets the position of the cross section having the gradation of the three-dimensional echo data in the three-dimensional echo data. The three-dimensional processing means includes a cross-section whose position is set by the cross-section setting means, a vascular vessel extracted by the first vascular extraction means, a vascular vessel extracted by the second vascular extraction means, or a tissue extraction means. A three-dimensional image obtained by synthesizing the extracted tissue of interest is constructed.
[0051]
(13) The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to (1), (2), (3), (4), (5), (6), (7), (8), (9), In the three-dimensional echo data, there is provided cross-section setting means for setting the position of a cross section having the gradation of the three-dimensional echo data, and the three-dimensional processing means indicates the position of the cross section set by the cross-section setting means. The index, the vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting unit, and the vessel extracted by the second vessel extracting unit or the target tissue extracted by the tissue extracting unit are synthesized. Display means is provided for displaying a three-dimensional image at the same time and displaying the three-dimensional image constructed by synthesizing the index by the three-dimensional processing means and the cross section.
[0052]
According to the above configuration, the cross-section setting means sets the position of the cross section having the gradation of the three-dimensional echo data in the three-dimensional echo data. The three-dimensional processing means includes an index indicating the position of the cross section set by the cross section setting means, the blood vessel extracted by the first blood vessel extracting means, and the blood vessel or tissue extracted by the second blood vessel extracting means. A three-dimensional image is constructed by synthesizing the target tissue extracted by the extracting means. The display means simultaneously displays a three-dimensional image constructed by synthesizing indexes by the three-dimensional processing means and a cross section.
[0053]
In order to achieve the second object, the following configuration (14) is adopted.
(14) An ultrasonic probe in which an ultrasonic transducer that transmits ultrasonic waves to a subject and receives echoes is provided at the tip, and a radial scan in which the ultrasonic transducer rotates around the insertion axis of the ultrasonic probe And a drive means for driving a spiral scan of the ultrasonic transducer in combination with a linear scan in which the ultrasonic transducer advances and retreats along the insertion axis, and an echo signal from the ultrasonic transducer is continuous. In an ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus for obtaining a plurality of tomographic image data,
A plurality of ultrasonic transducers are provided with different transmission / reception surfaces of the radial scan, and a plurality of continuous tomographic image data obtained by performing the spiral scan by the plurality of ultrasonic transducers. One piece of three-dimensional echo data is configured.
[0054]
According to the above configuration, the driving means is an ultrasonic wave that combines a radial scan in which the ultrasonic transducer rotates around the insertion axis of the ultrasonic probe and a linear scan in which the ultrasonic transducer advances and retreats along the insertion axis. Drives the spiral scan of the transducer. Then, one three-dimensional echo data is formed from a plurality of continuous tomographic image data obtained by a spiral scan performed by a plurality of ultrasonic transducers.
[0055]
In order to achieve the third object, the following configuration (15) is adopted.
(15) An ultrasonic probe in which an ultrasonic transducer that transmits ultrasonic waves to a subject and receives echoes is provided at the tip, and a radial scan in which the ultrasonic transducer rotates around the insertion axis of the ultrasonic probe And a drive means for driving a spiral scan of the ultrasonic transducer in combination with a linear scan in which the ultrasonic transducer advances and retreats along the insertion axis, and an echo signal from the ultrasonic transducer is continuous. In an ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus for obtaining a plurality of tomographic image data,
The drive means stores the plurality of continuous tomographic image data over a plurality of sets obtained by repeating the advance / retreat of the ultrasonic probe a plurality of times and obtained by the advance / retreat of the ultrasonic probe a plurality of times. A body motion recognition unit that compares tomographic image data at the same position between the plurality of sets stored in the storage unit and recognizes a body motion between the tomographic image data is provided, and the body motion is corrected continuously. One set of a plurality of representative tomographic image data is configured.
[0056]
According to the above configuration, the driving means is an ultrasonic that combines a radial scan in which the ultrasonic transducer rotates about the insertion axis of the ultrasonic probe and a linear scan in which the ultrasonic transducer advances and retreats along the insertion axis. The vibrator is driven by repeating spiral scanning a plurality of times. The storage means stores a plurality of continuous tomographic image data over a plurality of sets obtained by advancing and retreating the ultrasonic probe a plurality of times. The body movement recognition unit compares the tomographic image data at the same position among a plurality of sets stored in the storage unit, and recognizes the body movement between the tomographic image data. Then, one set of a plurality of continuous representative tomographic image data in which body motion is corrected is configured.
[0057]
(16) In the ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to (15), a plurality of continuous multiple motion data corrected by removing the tomographic image data generated by the motion recognized by the motion recognition means. One set of representative tomographic image data is configured.
According to the above configuration, a set of a plurality of continuous representative tomographic image data in which body motion is corrected is configured by excluding tomographic image data in which body motion recognized by the body motion recognition means.
[0058]
In order to achieve the fourth object, the following configurations (17), (18), and (19) are adopted.
(17) An ultrasonic probe in which an ultrasonic transducer that transmits ultrasonic waves to a subject and receives echoes is provided at the tip, and a radial scan in which the ultrasonic transducer rotates around the insertion axis of the ultrasonic probe And a drive means for driving a spiral scan of the ultrasonic transducer in combination with a linear scan in which the ultrasonic transducer advances and retreats along the insertion axis, and an echo signal from the ultrasonic transducer is continuous. In an ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus for obtaining a plurality of tomographic image data,
The ultrasonic probe is provided with an index indicating the range of advancement and retreat.
[0059]
According to the above configuration, the driving means is an ultrasonic wave that combines a radial scan in which the ultrasonic transducer rotates around the insertion axis of the ultrasonic probe and a linear scan in which the ultrasonic transducer advances and retreats along the insertion axis. Drives the spiral scan of the transducer. The index provided on the ultrasonic probe indicates the range of advancement and retreat.
[0060]
(18) The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to (17), wherein the ultrasonic probe transmits a driving force from the driving unit to the ultrasonic transducer, and the driving transmission member. A translucent flexible sheath including the ultrasonic transducer, a translucent outer sheath covering the flexible sheath, and the index is provided on the drive transmission member. To do.
[0061]
According to the above configuration, the drive transmission member transmits the driving force from the driving means to the ultrasonic transducer, the radial scan in which the ultrasonic transducer rotates about the insertion axis of the ultrasonic probe, and the insertion axis. The spiral scan of the ultrasonic transducer combined with the linear scan in which the ultrasonic transducer advances and retreats is driven. The indicator provided on the drive transmission member indicates the range of advancement and retreat through the translucent flexible sheath and the translucent outer sheath covering the flexible sheath.
(19) The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to (18), wherein the index is an annular member.
[0062]
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
Embodiments of the present invention will be described below with reference to the drawings.
(First embodiment)
1 to 11 relate to the first embodiment of the present invention, FIG. 1 shows the configuration of the ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to the first embodiment of the present invention, and FIG. 2 shows the tip of the ultrasonic probe. 3 shows the structure of the drive section of the ultrasonic probe, FIG. 4 shows an explanatory diagram for spiral scanning by a combination of radial scanning and linear scanning, and FIG. 5 shows a plurality of obtained by spiral scanning. FIG. 6 is a flow chart showing a series of processing contents performed by the arithmetic processing processor, FIG. 7 is a flow chart showing the processing contents of the vascular extraction in FIG. 6, and FIG. 9 shows tomographic image data in which an offset circle is set, FIG. 9 shows a state of extracting the outline of the region of the target tissue with a pointer, and FIG. 10 builds a three-dimensional model. Shows the illustration, Figure 11 shows a 3-dimensional image displayed on the image processing monitor.
[0063]
As shown in FIG. 1, an ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus 1 according to the first embodiment of the present invention includes an ultrasonic probe 2 that transmits and receives ultrasonic waves, and an ultrasonic wave for ultrasonic observation using the ultrasonic probe 2. An ultrasonic observation unit 3 that displays a tomographic image and the like, and an image processing unit 4 that performs image processing on ultrasonic echo data obtained by the ultrasonic observation unit 3 are provided.
[0064]
FIG. 2 shows the configuration of the tip of the ultrasonic probe 2 that performs spiral scanning. An ultrasonic transducer 6 provided with a lens 6a for converging the ultrasonic beam is disposed at the tip of the flexible shaft 5, and the flexible shaft 5 and the ultrasonic transducer 6 are cylindrical and translucent. The flexible sheath 7 is inserted inside.
[0065]
The flexible sheath 7 is filled with a fluid medium 8 such as water, and the fluid medium 8 functions as a lubricant and an ultrasonic transmission medium. Further, a cylindrical and translucent outer sheath 9 is provided on the outside so as to cover the flexible sheath 7 to form an insertion portion to be inserted into the body cavity.
A fluid medium 8 is filled between the outer sheath 9 and the flexible sheath 7 as in the flexible sheath 7.
[0066]
The flexible shaft 5 is provided with inversion position marker members 10A and 10B indicating the range in the insertion axis direction of the spiral scan performed by the ultrasonic probe 2, and the inversion position marker members 10A and 10B are red or yellow. The color is easy to check visually.
[0067]
Further, the inversion position marker members 10 </ b> A and 10 </ b> B have an annular shape such as a pipe, and the outer diameter thereof is the same as the inner diameter of the flexible sheath 7 so that there is no gap between the flexible sheath 7. It is almost the same. By doing so, the inversion position marker members 10 </ b> A and 10 </ b> B function as a bubble trap that prevents bubbles from leaking to the ultrasonic transducer 6 side when bubbles are present inside the flexible sheath 7.
[0068]
FIG. 3 shows the configuration of the drive unit 11 that drives the ultrasonic probe 2 of the ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus 1 of the present embodiment. The rear end of the flexible shaft 5 is connected to the rotating shaft of the DC motor 12. The flexible sheath 7 is connected to the frame 14 of the radial rotating unit 13 in the driving unit 11.
[0069]
The outer sheath 9 is connected to the chassis 15 of the drive unit 11. The rotation of the DC motor 12 is transmitted to the rotary encoder 17 via, for example, a gear 16 that meshes at a gear ratio of 1: 1, and the rotational position signal of the ultrasonic transducer 6 is output from the rotary encoder 17.
[0070]
The radial rotation unit 13 including the DC motor 12, the gear 16, and the rotary encoder 17 is connected to the linear drive member 18 as a whole. The linear drive member 18 is fitted to a ball screw 19, and the rear end of the ball screw 19 is connected to the rotation shaft of the stepping motor 20.
[0071]
The ultrasonic observation unit 3 shown in FIG. 1 performs ultrasonic transmission / reception processing and real-time ultrasonic tomographic image display, and the image processing unit 4 3 based on echo data obtained by the ultrasonic observation unit 3. Perform image processing for dimensional image display.
[0072]
The ultrasonic observation unit 3 transmits electrical pulses to the ultrasonic transducer 6 and amplifies the electrical reception pulses from the ultrasonic transducer 6 so that the ultrasonic transducer 6 transmits and receives ultrasonic waves. A transmission / reception unit 21 for A / D converting the intensity into digital echo data, a frame memory 22 for storing echo data necessary to form one tomogram captured by the transmission / reception unit 21, and a frame Echo data stored in the memory 22 and expressed in a polar coordinate format represented by the rotation angle of the ultrasonic transducer 6 and the distance from the ultrasonic transducer 6 is expressed in the form of a horizontal displacement x and a vertical displacement y. A digital scan converter (abbreviated as DSC) 23 that converts coordinates into tomographic image data expressed in the orthogonal coordinate format represented; a D / A converter 24 that converts tomographic image data output from the DSC 23 into an analog signal; An observation monitor 25 that receives an output image signal of the A / A converter 24 and displays a real-time ultrasonic tomogram, and a system controller 26 that controls each unit such as the drive unit 11, the transmission / reception unit 21, and the frame memory 22. It is prepared for.
[0073]
The image processing unit 4 includes a CPU 27 that controls image processing and the like, a main storage device 28 that stores control performed by the CPU 27 and various processing programs performed by an arithmetic processing processor 30 described later, and the ultrasonic observation unit 3. Based on 3D data storage device 29 for storing a plurality of continuous tomographic image data, that is, 3D echo data, and 3D echo data stored in 3D data storage device 29, vessel extraction, tissue extraction, synthesis , An arithmetic processing processor 30 for performing various image processing such as shadow removal, shading addition, coordinate conversion, etc. at high speed, a three-dimensional processing memory 31 for storing the processing results of the arithmetic processing processor 30, a control program, backup data, etc. An external recording device 32 composed of a hard disk or the like for recording information, an operation terminal 33 such as a keyboard, and an arithmetic processor 30 A pointing device 34 such as a trackball for inputting points or areas that need to be specified for processing, a frame buffer 35 for temporarily storing data after image processing, and an output image signal from the frame buffer 35 for converting it into an analog signal D An A / A converter 36 and an image processing monitor 37 that receives an output image signal of the D / A converter 36 and displays a three-dimensional image after image processing. Each unit in the image processing unit 4 transmits and receives various commands and data through the data transfer bus 38.
[0074]
In this embodiment, as will be described later, three-dimensional echo data composed of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject by the arithmetic processing processor 30 and the pointing device 34 of the image processing unit 4. It is characterized in that it is configured to extract a vascular vessel and a target tissue and construct a three-dimensional image in which the vascular vessel and the target tissue are synthesized.
[0075]
Hereinafter, the operation of the ultrasonic probe 2 and the drive unit 11 will be described.
When performing ultrasonic observation, the ultrasonic probe 2 is inserted into the body cavity, and the system controller 26 rotates the rotating shaft of the DC motor 12 and the flexible shaft 5 in the direction of the arrow in FIG.
[0076]
Then, the ultrasonic transducer 6 attached to the tip of the flexible shaft 5 rotates to transmit ultrasonic waves radially in a direction perpendicular to the axial direction (longitudinal direction) of the ultrasonic probe 2 and change the acoustic impedance. The reflected ultrasonic wave (echo signal) reflected by is received. That is, the ultrasonic transducer 6 scans in a radial shape.
[0077]
Further, the system controller 26 detects the rotation angle of the ultrasonic transducer 6 from the rotation position signal from the rotary encoder 17 and rotates the rotation shaft of the stepping motor 20 and the ball screw 19 by a certain angle with respect to the rotation angle.
[0078]
Then, the linear drive member 18 and the radial rotating portion 13, and thus the flexible shaft 5, the ultrasonic transducer 6, and the flexible sheath 7, are divided by a minute pitch of the ball screw 19 in the axial direction of the flexible shaft 5 in the outer sheath 9. Advance and retreat. That is, the ultrasonic transducer 6 scans linearly in the direction of the insertion axis of the ultrasonic probe 2.
[0079]
Thus, by performing the spiral scan (or three-dimensional scan) shown in FIG. 4C, which combines the radial scan shown in FIG. 4A and the linear scan shown in FIG. An echo signal for the region is obtained.
[0080]
The details of the spiral scan control by the system controller 26 will be described as follows.
The position of the linear drive member 18 at the start of scanning is indicated by A in FIG. On the other hand, it is assumed that the tip of the ultrasonic probe 2 is in the state shown in FIG. 2 at the start of scanning, and the position of the ultrasonic transducer 6 corresponding to A is indicated by a in FIG. When scanning by the system controller 26 is started, the ultrasonic transducer 6 moves backward toward the drive unit 11 while rotating. The transmission and reception of ultrasonic waves shall be performed during this backward movement.
[0081]
When the linear driving member 18 reaches the position B in FIG. 3, the system controller 26 reverses the rotation direction of the stepping motor 20 and the rotation direction of the ball screw 19. Then, the ultrasonic transducer 6 reverses the advancing / retreating direction and moves forward from the drive unit 11 side. The position of the ultrasonic transducer 6 with respect to B is indicated by b in FIG.
[0082]
In this way, the ultrasonic transducer 6 performs a spiral scan in the range shown from a to b. By acting in this way, at the start of spiral scanning, the user passes, for example, the ultrasonic transducer 6 and the inversion through the translucent flexible sheath 7 and the outer sheath 9 from the optical observation system of the endoscope. By confirming the position marker member 10A, it is possible to grasp the positions a and b and know the end portion of the spiral scan.
[0083]
Further, when the advancement / retraction amount of the ultrasonic transducer 6 is set to be short by an input from the operation terminal 33, the system controller 26 determines that the stepping motor 20 when the linear drive member 18 reaches the position C in FIG. The ultrasonic transducer 6 performs a spiral scan in the range indicated by a to c.
[0084]
In this case, the user grasps the positions a and c by confirming the ultrasonic transducer 6 and the inverted position marker member 10B from the optical observation system of the endoscope, for example, at the start of the spiral scan. You can know the end of the spiral scan.
[0085]
Hereinafter, operations of the ultrasonic observation unit 3 and the image processing unit 4 will be described.
An ultrasonic echo signal obtained by the ultrasonic probe 2 is amplified by an amplifier in the transmission / reception unit 21. Thereafter, the transmitter / receiver 21 detects the intensity of the echo signal represented by the envelope, the power of the envelope, the absolute value, the square root, etc., and converts it into digital echo data. Echo data necessary to construct one ultrasonic tomographic image is stored in the frame memory 22.
[0086]
The DSC 23 then performs coordinate conversion and interpolation from echo data expressed in polar coordinate format to tomographic image data expressed in orthogonal coordinate format. Thereafter, the tomographic image data is displayed as a real-time ultrasonic tomographic image on the observation monitor 25 via the D / A converter 24.
[0087]
Further, by repeating this operation by spiral scanning of the ultrasonic probe 2, a plurality of continuous ultrasonic tomographic images are sequentially displayed on the observation monitor 25.
[0088]
On the other hand, the tomographic image data is sent from the subsequent stage of the DSC 23 to the image processing unit 4 together with accompanying data such as the size and distance between the tomographic image data. In this way, a plurality of continuous tomographic image data shown in FIG. 5 obtained by spiral scanning of the ultrasonic probe 2, that is, three-dimensional echo data, is sent to the image processing unit 4. In FIG. 5, a plurality of tomographic image data is sequentially numbered in units of frames. 0, No. 1,. It is numbered like N.
[0089]
The three-dimensional echo data is stored in the three-dimensional data storage device 29. The arithmetic processor 30 extracts blood vessels, vessels other than blood vessels, and tissue of interest from the three-dimensional echo data, and performs various image processing such as synthesis, hidden surface removal, shadow addition, and coordinate conversion.
[0090]
The processing result of the arithmetic processor 30 is stored in the three-dimensional processing memory 31 as three-dimensional image data. Details of the processing performed by the arithmetic processor 30 will be described later.
[0091]
The three-dimensional image data is sent to the frame buffer 35, temporarily stored, and sent to the image processing monitor 37 via the D / A converter 36. Thereafter, a three-dimensional image is displayed on the image processing monitor 37.
[0092]
The various image processing processes by the arithmetic processor 30 are controlled by the CPU 27.
Hereinafter, details of processing performed mainly by the arithmetic processing processor 30 will be described.
FIG. 6 is a diagram for explaining a series of processes performed by the arithmetic processor 30.
[0093]
In step S1 shown in FIG. 6, a vascular extraction process for extracting a vascular vessel is performed. FIG. 7 is a diagram for explaining the vascular extraction process. Specifically, the processing is as follows.
In step S <b> 11 shown in FIG. 7, the three-dimensional echo data is read from the three-dimensional echo data storage device 29. For convenience of explanation, each tomographic image data constituting this three-dimensional echo data has a No. as shown in FIG. 5 corresponding to the order obtained by the spiral scan. Assume that image numbers 0 to N are assigned.
[0094]
In step S12 shown in FIG. 7, the tomographic image data is smoothed by a known method from the 3D echo data read from the 3D data storage device 29 in order to remove disturbing noises during vessel extraction. To do.
[0095]
In step S13 shown in FIG. The tomographic image data of 0 is displayed on the image processing monitor 37 as an ultrasonic tomographic image. This tomographic image data is shown in FIG.
[0096]
In step S14 shown in FIG. 7, an offset circle is set in order to remove echoes (multiple echoes) caused by multiple reflections of ultrasonic waves from the flexible sheath 7 and the outer sheath 16 that are obstructive during vessel extraction. The data in the offset circle is removed from the 3D echo data.
[0097]
These multiple echoes and offset circles are denoted by reference numerals 41 and 42 in FIG. FIG. 8 shows tomographic image data obtained by inserting the ultrasonic probe 2 into a blood vessel α other than a blood vessel in a body cavity.
[0098]
Accordingly, since the ultrasonic transducer 6 is located at the center of the tomographic image data and the multiple echo 41 appears around it, the offset circle 42 is set so as to surround it.
[0099]
The radius and center position of the offset circle 42 are set by a pointer 43 that can move freely within the screen under the control of the pointing device 34. The pointer 43 is displayed on the image processing monitor 37 as shown in FIG.
[0100]
In step S15 shown in FIG. 7, an extraction start point is set on the vessel to be extracted. This extraction start point is set by using the pointing device 34 to set a point on the pulse to be extracted using a pointer. FIG. 8 shows a case where the extraction start point is set at the center of the ultrasonic image.
[0101]
In step S16 shown in FIG. 7, the scan line is radiated radially at an equal angle from the extraction start point, and the point where the luminance value changes on the scan line is recognized as the wall of the vessel α.
[0102]
This scan line is shown as an arrow in FIG. Note that blood vessels and vessels other than blood vessels usually have lower echo signals than the parenchyma, so that the luminance value in the vessels that appear as ultrasonic tomographic images is usually low. Therefore, in this step S16, it is only necessary to search the scan line from the extraction start point and extract the point where the luminance value first increases greatly as the vascular wall.
[0103]
In step S <b> 17 shown in FIG. 7, the extracted vascular position is output to the three-dimensional processing memory 31. In the process of step S16, since the vascular wall is extracted as points on a plurality of scan lines, the region in the vascular vessel is treated as a region inside the closed curve connecting the plurality of points in order.
[0104]
In step S18 shown in FIG. 7, the center of gravity of the region in the vessel is calculated. The center of gravity can be calculated as the average (μx, μy) of the coordinates (x, y) of the constituent elements (pixels) of the tomographic image data in the vessel.
[0105]
In step S19 shown in FIG. It is determined whether or not the processing from step S16 to step S18 has been performed on the images up to N. If the processing is completed, the vascular extraction processing is terminated, and if not, the processing jumps to step S16. The above processing is performed on the tomographic image data having the next image number.
[0106]
Note that the extraction start point of tomographic image data having the next image number is the center of gravity calculated in step S18. The centroid is set as the extraction start point again because the vascular α appearing on each tomographic image data appears at almost the same position between the adjacent tomographic image data. This is because the point is on α.
In this way, a vessel is extracted for each tomographic image data, and the position thereof is stored in the three-dimensional processing memory 31.
[0107]
In step S2 shown in FIG. 6, a target tissue such as a tumor is extracted. Specifically, extraction is performed as follows. First, the three-dimensional echo data is read from the three-dimensional data storage device 29 and the tomographic image data is displayed on the image processing monitor 37 as an ultrasonic tomographic image.
[0108]
Then, the pointing device 34 is used to enclose the outline of the region to be extracted by the pointer. Further, this operation is referred to as “No. Repeat for each of 0 to N tomographic image data.
[0109]
This is shown in FIG. As shown in FIG. For the tomographic image data of J (J = 1,..., N), the outline of the target tissue region is surrounded by a pointer.
The extracted position of the target tissue is output to the three-dimensional processing memory 31. In this way, the target tissue is extracted for each tomographic image data, and the position is stored in the three-dimensional processing memory 31.
[0110]
In step S3 shown in FIG. 6, interpolation processing between tomographic image data is performed on each of the vascular vessel extracted in step S1 and the target tissue extracted in step S2, and each three-dimensional model is constructed. FIG. 10 shows a storage format in the three-dimensional processing memory 31 at this time. Specifically, the processing is as follows.
[0111]
First, one three-dimensional data space having (x, y, z) as coordinates is prepared in the three-dimensional processing memory 31 for each of the blood vessel and the target tissue. For example, in the three-dimensional data space for the vascular vessel, the component (pixel) on the (x, y) plane having the z coordinate corresponding to each tomographic image data exists at a position corresponding to the vascular vessel. For example, blue is assigned to the pixel as data.
[0112]
The pixels in other areas are colorless. As shown in FIG. 5, this is possible because each tomographic image data has the z-axis aligned as a normal line. In addition, the pixel which exists in the position of the vascular vessel which the thing painted out black among the pixels shown by the square in FIG. 10 is shown.
[0113]
Next, interpolation processing is performed between pixels to which colors are assigned by a known method. Note that FIG. 10 shows a case where interpolation is performed by adding another interpolated plane between tomographic image data.
[0114]
As described in the case of a vascular vessel, the same processing is applied to the three-dimensional data space for the tissue of interest. At this time, the color assigned as data to the pixel is, for example, red.
In this way, the modeled vessel is stored in the three-dimensional data space for the vessel in the three-dimensional processing memory 31, and the modeled tissue is stored in the three-dimensional data space for the target tissue.
[0115]
In step S4 shown in FIG. 6, the extracted vessel and target tissue are combined into one three-dimensional data space. Specifically, the processing is as follows.
First, another three-dimensional data space is prepared in the three-dimensional processing memory 31. Then, data is added between pixels having the same coordinates (x, y, z) in the two three-dimensional data spaces for the vessel and the tissue of interest.
[0116]
When adding a colorless pixel and a red pixel, or a colorless pixel and a blue pixel, red or blue is used as an addition value. In addition, when adding the red pixel and the blue pixel, priority is given to red, and red is set as an addition value.
In this way, the blood vessel and the tissue of interest are synthesized into one three-dimensional data space and modeled.
[0117]
In step S5 shown in FIG. 6, a three-dimensional process of a known method such as shadow removal, shadow addition, coordinate transformation, etc. is performed on the synthesized vessel and target tissue to construct a three-dimensional image shown in FIG.
In step S <b> 6 shown in FIG. 6, this three-dimensional image is displayed on the image processing monitor 37.
[0118]
Thus, in the present embodiment, the arithmetic processor 30 and the pointing device 34 are the first vascular extraction means, the tissue extraction means, the three-dimensional processing means, and the extraction start point setting means, and the drive unit 11 is the drive means. The flexible shaft 5 functions as a drive transmission member, and the reversal position marker members 7 and 8 function as indices indicating the range of advancement and retraction of the ultrasonic transducer 6.
[0119]
The present embodiment has the following effects.
In the present embodiment, the blood vessel and the tissue of interest are extracted from the three-dimensional echo data including echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject by the arithmetic processor 30 and the pointing device 34. In addition, since the three-dimensional image is constructed by synthesizing the blood vessel and the tissue of interest, the positional relationship between the blood vessel where movement information is difficult to obtain and the tissue of interest can be grasped.
[0120]
Therefore, for example, it is possible to grasp how much the tumor has spread around the vascular where movement information is difficult to obtain, and for example, it is possible to provide important information when determining the resection range by surgery.
[0121]
In the present embodiment, since a three-dimensional image is constructed by color-combining the extracted vessel and the target tissue, it is easy to visually distinguish the vessel and the target tissue.
[0122]
In the present embodiment, the reversal position marker members 10A and 10B provided on the drive transmission member are moved forward and backward through the translucent flexible sheath 7 and the translucent outer sheath 9 covering the flexible sheath 7. Since the range is configured, the user can observe the ultrasonic transducer 6 and the inverted position marker members 10A and 10B well from the optical observation system of the endoscope, for example, at the start of the spiral scan, and the advance / retreat position. By grasping a, b, and c, it is possible to know the end portion of the spiral scan.
Therefore, it is possible to increase the reliability when acquiring the echo signal from the tissue of interest as the three-dimensional echo data, and to shorten the examination time.
[0123]
Further, in the present embodiment, since the reversal position marker members 10A and 10B are configured to have an annular shape, when there are bubbles inside the flexible sheath 7, the reversal position marker members 10A and 10B have air bubbles. It functions as a bubble trap so that it does not come to the ultrasonic transducer 6 side, and since ultrasonic waves and echoes transmitted and received from the ultrasonic transducer 6 are not disturbed by the bubbles, good tomographic image data can be obtained. .
[0124]
(Modification)
In the first embodiment, the outer shaft 9 is configured such that the flexible shaft 5, the ultrasonic transducer 6, and the flexible sheath 7 are advanced and retracted. The child 6 may be configured to retreat. If comprised in this way, the outer sheath 9 is unnecessary.
[0125]
In the present embodiment, after the tomographic image data is smoothed in step S12, a scan line is radiated in step S16, and a point having a change in luminance value on the scan line is recognized as a vascular wall. The tomographic image data may be binarized after step S12. In this way, the vascular wall can be recognized more clearly.
[0126]
In this embodiment, the image number No. Although 0 tomographic image data is displayed on the image processing monitor 37 as an ultrasonic tomographic image and an offset circle and an extraction start point are set, this may be performed on other tomographic image data.
[0127]
Further, in the present embodiment, a vascular α other than a blood vessel is extracted as a vascular vessel. However, in step S15 shown in FIG. 7, the extraction start point is set on the vascular (blood vessel) β shown in FIG. The vascular (blood vessel) β may be extracted by this method.
[0128]
Further, in the present embodiment, the target tissue is extracted from the three-dimensional echo data by using the pointing device 34 and enclosing the outline of the region to be extracted by the pointer. However, this extraction method may be any known method. . For example, you may make it obtain | require by the texture pattern which tomographic image data has.
[0129]
In addition, the name of a doctor who is a user may be input from the operation terminal 33 or the like, and various parameters that need to be set in processing performed by the arithmetic processing processor 30 may be changed based on the name. These various parameters include, for example, an orientation when displaying a three-dimensional image, an amount of light when a shadow is added, and a threshold value when extracting a point where the luminance value greatly increases for vessel extraction described in step S16. Etc.
[0130]
With this configuration, it is possible to simplify the setting of the apparatus even when the setting differs according to the user's preference. In this case, the operation terminal 33 functions as a user identification unit.
[0131]
In addition, a motor torque adjustment knob that adjusts the torque when the stepping motor 20 rotates may be provided in the drive unit 11. At this time, the motor torque adjustment knob is used to adjust the torque by changing the current flowing in the drive circuit (not shown) of the stepping motor 20.
[0132]
In general, the stepping motor 20 does not rotate when a force greater than a certain force corresponding to the amount of current flowing through the drive circuit is applied. Therefore, by configuring in this way, the constant force can be easily adjusted. For example, the flexible shaft 5 and the ultrasonic transducer 6 are forcibly advanced and retracted even if the ultrasonic probe 2 is sandwiched between anything. Therefore, the ultrasonic probe 2 can be prevented from being broken.
[0133]
In addition, the variation in the constant force of each stepping motor can be easily adjusted at the time of factory shipment. Further, for example, when inserting the ultrasonic probe 2 from the mouth, the torque is weakened at a less curved portion such as the esophagus, and the torque is slightly increased at a curved portion such as the duodenum, pancreatic duct, bile duct, etc. The torque can be adjusted according to the examination site.
[0134]
(Second Embodiment)
FIGS. 12 and 13 relate to the second embodiment of the present invention. FIG. 12 is a flowchart showing a series of processing contents performed by the arithmetic processor 30 in the second embodiment of the present invention. FIG. The three-dimensional image displayed on the process monitor 37 is shown. The hardware configuration of this embodiment is the same as that of the first embodiment, and the processing program is different, so that it will be omitted.
[0135]
The operation of this embodiment will be described below.
In the present embodiment, a series of processes performed by the arithmetic processor 30 is different from the first embodiment. Therefore, only different parts will be described.
FIG. 12 is a diagram for explaining a series of processes performed by the arithmetic processor 30. Each process shown in FIG. 12 is the same as the process of the same number shown in FIG. 6 described in the first embodiment.
[0136]
In step S1 shown in FIG. 12, the blood vessel α shown in FIG. 8 is extracted by the method described in the first embodiment.
In step S1 ′ shown in FIG. 12, the blood vessel (blood vessel) β shown in FIG. 8 is extracted by the method described in the first embodiment. Actually, the extraction start point may be set on the blood vessel (blood vessel) β in step S15 of step S1.
[0137]
In step S3 shown in FIG. 12, by the method described in the first embodiment, interpolation processing between tomographic image data is performed on each of the vessel extracted in step S1 and the vessel extracted in step S1 ′. To construct each three-dimensional model.
Other operations are the same as those in the first embodiment.
[0138]
When operated in this way, the complicated running relationship between the vascular α and the vascular β as shown in FIG. 13 is displayed on the image processing monitor 37 as a three-dimensional image color-coded with blue and red, for example. The
[0139]
The present embodiment has the following effects.
In the present embodiment, a three-dimensional image in which a plurality of vessels are extracted from three-dimensional echo data composed of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from a three-dimensional space of a subject and a plurality of vessels are synthesized. Therefore, it is possible to grasp the positional relationship between a vessel where movement information is difficult to obtain and another vessel such as a blood vessel.
[0140]
Further, in the present embodiment, since a three-dimensional image in which a plurality of extracted vessels are color-coded and synthesized is constructed, the vessels can be easily distinguished visually.
Other effects are the same as those of the first embodiment.
[0141]
(Modification)
In the present embodiment, the two vessels of vessel α and vessel (blood vessel) β are extracted. However, the processing described in step S1 and step S1 ′ is repeated to extract more vessels. May be.
[0142]
(Third embodiment)
14 and 15 are related to the third embodiment of the present invention. FIG. 14 is a flowchart showing a series of processing contents performed by the arithmetic processor in the third embodiment of the present invention. FIG. 3 shows a three-dimensional image displayed on a processing monitor.
[0143]
The hardware configuration of the present embodiment is the same as that of the first embodiment, and the contents of the program to be processed are different and will be omitted.
Next, the operation of this embodiment will be described.
This embodiment is different from the second embodiment in a series of processes performed by the arithmetic processor 30. Therefore, only different parts will be described.
[0144]
FIG. 14 is a diagram for explaining a series of processes performed by the arithmetic processor 30. Each process shown in FIG. 14 has the same contents as the processes of the same numbers shown in FIGS. 6 and 12 described in the first embodiment and the second embodiment.
[0145]
In the first embodiment, a plurality of blood vessels α and β are extracted including the blood vessel α and the target tissue, and in the second embodiment, including the blood vessels (blood vessels) β. A target tissue is extracted by the method described in the first embodiment, and a three-dimensional image in which a plurality of vessels α and β and the target tissue are synthesized by the method described in the second embodiment is constructed. ing.
[0146]
Note that different colors (for example, blue, yellow, and red) are assigned to the vessel α, the vessel β, and the target tissue, respectively.
[0147]
Other operations are the same as those of the second embodiment.
[0148]
When processed in this way, as shown in FIG. 15, the complex positional relationships of the target tissue such as vascular α, vascular (blood vessel) β, and tumor in FIG. 8 are assigned, for example, blue, yellow, and red colors, respectively. And displayed on the image processing monitor 37 as a three-dimensional image color-coded.
[0149]
The present embodiment has the following effects.
In the present embodiment, a plurality of vessels and a tissue of interest are extracted from three-dimensional echo data composed of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the subject's three-dimensional space, and extracted from the three-dimensional echo data. Since a three-dimensional image is constructed by synthesizing a plurality of vessels and a target tissue, it is possible to grasp the positional relationship between a vessel where movement information is difficult to obtain and another vessel such as a blood vessel.
[0150]
In addition, it is possible to grasp the positional relationship between a vessel in which movement information is difficult to obtain, a target tissue, and another vessel. Therefore, for example, it is possible to discriminate whether or not a tumor generated from a vessel where movement information is difficult to obtain has reached a blood vessel or another vessel.
[0151]
Further, in the present embodiment, since a plurality of extracted vessels including blood vessels are constructed so as to construct a three-dimensional image synthesized by color-coding the vessels and the target tissue, the vessels, the vessels and the target tissue are configured. And can be easily distinguished visually.
[0152]
Other effects are the same as those of the first embodiment and the second embodiment.
[0153]
(Fourth embodiment)
16 to 19 relate to the fourth embodiment, FIG. 16 shows the configuration of the ultrasonic probe and the drive unit in the fourth embodiment of the present invention, and FIG. 17 shows the fourth embodiment of the present invention. FIG. 18 schematically shows a plurality of tomographic image data obtained by the transducer array, and FIG. 19 shows a series of processing contents performed by the arithmetic processing processor. .
[0154]
Only parts different from the first embodiment will be described.
FIG. 16 is a diagram illustrating the configuration of the distal end portion of the ultrasonic probe 2 that performs spiral scanning and the drive unit 11 that drives the ultrasonic probe 2 of the ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to the present embodiment. A transducer array 49 in which a plurality of ultrasonic transducers are linearly arranged in parallel is provided at the tip of the flexible shaft 5.
[0155]
The flexible shaft 5 and the transducer array 49 are inserted into a cylindrical flexible sheath 7. The flexible sheath 7 is filled with a fluid medium 8 such as water, and the fluid medium 8 functions as a lubricant and an ultrasonic transmission medium.
[0156]
The rear end of the flexible shaft 5 is connected to the rotating shaft of the DC motor 12. The flexible sheath 7 is connected to the frame 14 in the drive unit 11. The rotation of the DC motor 12 is transmitted to the rotary encoder 17 via, for example, a gear 16 that meshes at a gear ratio of 1: 1, and the rotational position signal of the ultrasonic transducer 6 is output from the rotary encoder 17.
[0157]
FIG. 17 is a diagram illustrating configurations of the ultrasonic observation unit 3 and the image processing unit 4 of the ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to the present embodiment. The ultrasonic observation unit 3 transmits and receives ultrasonic waves and displays a real-time CFM (color flow mapping) image. The image processing unit 4 displays a three-dimensional image based on echo data obtained by the ultrasonic observation unit 3. Image processing for
[0158]
The ultrasonic observation unit 3 transmits and receives electrical pulses with delay to each ultrasonic transducer constituting the transducer array 49 so that the transducer array 49 transmits and receives ultrasonic waves, and amplifies the received pulses. The transmission / reception unit 21, the B-mode image creation unit 50 that creates tomographic image data from the intensity of the echo signal amplified by the transmission / reception unit 21, and the ultrasonic wave of a plurality of times in the same direction of the transducer array 49 by the transmission / reception unit 21 A blood flow image creation unit 51 that creates blood flow image data by a known method from movement information due to the Doppler phenomenon of blood cells obtained by transmission and reception, and tomographic image data and blood flow image data are superimposed on CFM image data. The mixer 52 to be combined, the D / A converter 24 for converting the CFM image data output from the mixer 52 into an analog signal, and the output image signal from the D / A converter 24 are input to obtain tomographic image data in real time. Control of the observation monitor 25 that displays the CFM image with the blood flow image data superimposed on it, the drive unit 11, the transmission / reception unit 21, the B-mode image creation unit 50, the blood flow image creation unit 51, the mixer 52, and the like. And a system controller 26 to perform.
[0159]
The B-mode image creation unit 50 detects the envelope of the echo signal amplified by the transmission / reception unit 21, amplifies the signal by various methods such as logarithmic amplification, and performs A / D conversion to digital echo data. 53, a frame memory 22-a for storing echo data necessary for constructing one tomographic image, and the echo data stored in the frame memory 22-a are interpolated to obtain a horizontal displacement x and a vertical direction. DSC23-a for converting to tomographic image data expressed in a rectangular coordinate format represented by the displacement y format.
[0160]
In addition, the blood flow image creation unit 51 inspects the phase of each amplified echo signal obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves in the same direction of the transducer array 49 by the transmission / reception unit 21 and moves relatively slowly. Removes unnecessary signal components from the body and constructs a single blood flow image with a Doppler detection calculation unit 54 that calculates Doppler data including information such as average speed, variance, and power at each point in the operating range The frame memory 22-b for storing the Doppler data necessary to perform the interpolation, the Doppler data stored in the frame memory 22-b is interpolated, and the orthogonality is expressed in the form of the displacement x in the horizontal direction and the displacement y in the vertical direction. DSC23-b which converts into blood flow image data expressed in a coordinate format.
[0161]
The configuration of the image processing unit 4 is the same as that of the first embodiment.
Next, the operation of this embodiment will be described.
Hereinafter, the operation of the ultrasonic probe 2 and the drive unit 11 will be described.
[0162]
When performing ultrasonic observation, the ultrasonic probe 2 is inserted into the body cavity. The transmitter / receiver 21 transmits an electrical pulse to several adjacent ultrasonic transducers constituting the transducer array 49 to form an ultrasonic beam.
[0163]
In this way, the ultrasonic wave is transmitted in a direction perpendicular to the axial direction (longitudinal direction) of the ultrasonic probe 2 and the reflected ultrasonic wave (echo signal) reflected by the changing portion of the acoustic impedance is received.
[0164]
The transmitter / receiver 21 drives the ultrasonic transducer so that the transducer array 49 repeats the transmission / reception of the ultrasonic wave a plurality of times in the same direction in order to obtain blood flow movement information. Further, the transmission / reception unit 21 shifts the driving ultrasonic transducer to shift transmission / reception of the ultrasonic beam in the direction of the arrow in FIG. That is, the transducer array 49 scans linearly in the direction of the insertion axis of the ultrasonic probe 2.
[0165]
Further, the system controller 26 rotates the rotating shaft of the DC motor 12 and the flexible shaft 5 in the direction of the arrow in FIG. Then, the transducer array 49 attached to the tip of the flexible shaft 5 rotates. That is, the transducer array 49 scans in a radial shape.
[0166]
Thus, an echo signal for the three-dimensional region of the subject is obtained by combining the linear scan and the radial scan.
Hereinafter, operations of the ultrasonic observation unit 3 and the image processing unit 4 will be described.
[0167]
The echo signal obtained by the ultrasonic probe 2 is amplified by the transmission / reception unit 21 and input to the B-mode image creation unit 50 and the blood flow image creation unit 51.
In the B-mode image creation unit 50, the amplified echo signal is detected by the B-mode detection unit 53 for the envelope as intensity, amplified by various methods such as logarithmic amplification, and converted into digital echo data as A / D Converted.
[0168]
The echo data necessary to construct one ultrasonic tomographic image is stored in the frame memory 22-a. Thereafter, the echo data stored in the frame memory 22-a is interpolated by the DSC 23-a, and is converted into tomographic image data expressed in the orthogonal coordinate format expressed in the form of the horizontal displacement x and the vertical displacement y. It is converted and output to the mixer 52.
[0169]
In the blood flow image creation unit 51, the phase of each amplified echo signal obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves in the same direction of the transducer array 49 is detected by the Doppler detection calculation unit 54 and compared. Unnecessary signal components from slow moving objects are removed.
[0170]
Then, only the frequency shift due to the Doppler phenomenon of blood cells is extracted, and Doppler data including information such as the average velocity, dispersion, and power of each point in the scanning range is calculated. The top data necessary for constructing one blood flow image is stored in the frame memory 22-b.
[0171]
The Doppler data stored in the frame memory 22-b is interpolated by the DSC 23-b and converted into blood flow image data expressed in the orthogonal coordinate format expressed in the form of the horizontal displacement x and the vertical displacement y. And output to the mixer 52.
[0172]
The tomographic image data and blood flow image data input to the mixer 52 are superimposed and synthesized with CFM (color flow mapping) image data. The CFM image data output from the mixer 52 is converted into an analog signal by the D / A converter 24.
[0173]
The output image signal of the D / A converter 24 is displayed on the observation monitor 25 as a real-time CFM image. The CFM image displayed here is a linear CFM image obtained by linear scanning of the transducer array 49.
[0174]
Furthermore, by repeating this operation as the transducer array 49 rotates, a plurality of continuous CFM images are sequentially displayed on the observation monitor 25.
[0175]
On the other hand, blood flow image data as tomographic image data is sent to the image processing unit 4 from the subsequent stage of the DSC 23-a and 23-b together with auxiliary data such as the size, each tomographic image data, and the angle between each blood flow image data. .
[0176]
Thus, blood flow image data, that is, three-dimensional echo data and three-dimensional Doppler data are sent to the image processing unit 4 as a plurality of continuous tomographic image data shown in FIG. The three-dimensional echo data and the three-dimensional Doppler data are stored in the three-dimensional data storage device 29.
[0177]
The three-dimensional echo data and the three-dimensional Doppler data stored in the three-dimensional data storage device 29 are extracted from the three-dimensional echo data by using the arithmetic processor 30 to extract a vessel other than blood vessels and a target tissue from the three-dimensional Doppler data. Is extracted. Various image processing such as synthesis, hidden surface removal, shadow addition, and coordinate conversion are performed.
[0178]
The processing result of the arithmetic processor 30 is stored in the three-dimensional processing memory 31 as three-dimensional image data. Details of the processing performed by the arithmetic processor 30 will be described later.
[0179]
The three-dimensional image data is sent to the frame buffer 35, temporarily stored, and sent to the image processing monitor 37 via the D / A converter 36. Thereafter, a three-dimensional image is displayed on the image processing monitor 37.
[0180]
The various image processing processes by the arithmetic processor 30 are controlled by the CPU 27.
Hereinafter, details of processing performed mainly by the arithmetic processing processor 30 will be described.
[0181]
FIG. 19 is a diagram for explaining a series of processes performed by the arithmetic processor 30. Each process shown in FIG. 19 is the same as the process of the same number shown in FIG. 6 described in the first embodiment.
[0182]
In step S1 shown in FIG. 19, a blood vessel is extracted from the three-dimensional echo data by the method described in the first embodiment.
In step S2 shown in FIG. 19, the target tissue is extracted from the three-dimensional echo data by the method described in the first embodiment.
[0183]
In step S7 shown in FIG. 19, blood vessels are extracted from the three-dimensional Doppler data. Specifically, threshold processing is performed on each blood flow image data, and blood cells, that is, portions where the frequency shift due to blood flow is large are extracted as blood vessels.
[0184]
In step S8 shown in FIG. 19, interpolation processing between tomographic image data and blood flow image data is performed on each of the blood vessel extracted in step S1, the target tissue extracted in step S2, and the blood vessel extracted in step S7. To construct each three-dimensional model. Specifically, the processing is as follows.
[0185]
First, one three-dimensional data space having (x, y, z) as coordinates is prepared in the three-dimensional processing memory 31 for each of the blood vessel, the target tissue, and the blood vessel. Then, for example, in the three-dimensional data space for the vascular vessel, blue is assigned as data to a pixel existing at a position corresponding to the vascular vessel extracted in each tomographic image data. The pixels in other areas are colorless.
[0186]
Next, interpolation processing is performed between pixels assigned colors by a known method.
The same processing is performed on the three-dimensional data space for the target tissue. At this time, the color assigned to the pixel as data is red.
Further, the same processing is applied to the three-dimensional data space for blood vessels. At this time, the color assigned to the pixel as data is yellow.
[0187]
In this way, the modeled vessel is stored in the three-dimensional data space for the vessel in the three-dimensional processing memory 31, and the modeled tissue is stored in the three-dimensional data space for the target tissue. The modeled blood vessel is stored in the three-dimensional data space.
[0188]
In step S4 shown in FIG. 19, the extracted vessel, target tissue, and blood vessel are combined into one three-dimensional data space by the method described in the first embodiment.
Other operations are the same as those in the first embodiment.
[0189]
When operated in this way, as shown in FIG. 15, the complex relationship between blood vessels including blood vessels, and the positional relationship between the blood vessels and the tissue of interest are displayed on the image processing monitor 37 as a color-coded three-dimensional image. .
Thus, in the present embodiment, the arithmetic processor 30 functions as a second vascular extraction means.
[0190]
The present embodiment has the following effects.
In the present embodiment, a vascular vessel and a target tissue are extracted from 3D echo data composed of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the 3D space of the subject, and the ultrasound is transmitted to the 3D space of the subject. Vessels (blood vessels) were extracted from 3D Doppler data consisting of movement information of moving bodies obtained by sending and receiving sound waves, and extracted from the vessel, target tissue and 3D Doppler data extracted from 3D echo data Since it is configured to construct a three-dimensional image synthesized with a vessel, it is possible to grasp the positional relationship between a vessel where movement information is difficult to obtain and another vessel such as a blood vessel.
[0191]
In addition, it is possible to grasp the positional relationship between a vessel in which movement information is difficult to obtain, a target tissue, and a blood vessel. Therefore, for example, it is possible to distinguish whether or not a tumor generated from a vessel in which movement information is difficult to obtain has reached the blood vessel.
[0192]
Further, in the present embodiment, since a plurality of extracted vessels including blood vessels are constructed so as to construct a three-dimensional image synthesized by color-coding the vessels and the target tissue, the vessels, the vessels and the target tissue are configured. And can be easily distinguished visually.
Other effects are the same as those of the first embodiment.
[0193]
(Modification)
In the present embodiment, the transducer array 49 in which the ultrasonic transducers are linearly arranged is used. However, the ultrasonic transducer array is provided with a fan-shaped curve, and a transducer array generally called a convex is also used. good. The arrangement shape of the ultrasonic transducers constituting the transducer array 49 is not limited to these examples.
[0194]
(Fifth embodiment)
20 to 25 relate to the fifth embodiment. FIG. 20 is a flowchart showing a series of processing contents performed by the arithmetic processing processor in the fifth embodiment of the present invention. FIG. FIG. 22 shows the finally constructed three-dimensional image, FIG. 23 shows an explanatory diagram of processing for recognizing the wall of the vessel α, and FIG. FIG. 25 shows a three-dimensional image in another modified example, and FIG. 25 shows a three-dimensional image in another modified example.
[0195]
The hardware configuration of the present embodiment is the same as that of the third embodiment, and only the program to be processed is different, and will be omitted.
Next, the operation of this embodiment will be described.
[0196]
This embodiment is different from the third embodiment in a series of processes performed by the arithmetic processor 30. Therefore, only different parts will be described.
In the third embodiment, the target tissue and a plurality of vessels are extracted, and a three-dimensional image in which a plurality of vessels and the target tissue are combined is constructed. However, in the present embodiment, Furthermore, a three-dimensional image is constructed by synthesizing an ultrasonic tomographic image (hereinafter simply referred to as “cross section”) having a gradation of three-dimensional echo data.
[0197]
FIG. 20 is a diagram for explaining a series of processes performed by the arithmetic processor 30. Each process shown in FIG. 20 has the same contents as the process of the same number shown in FIG. 14 described in the third embodiment.
[0198]
In step S9 shown in FIG. 20, the position of the cross section to be synthesized is set. Specifically, it operates as follows.
[0199]
First, three-dimensional echo data is read from the three-dimensional data storage device 29. Then, the three-dimensional echo data is subjected to processing such as interpolation, and the four cross sections shown in FIG. 21 are constructed and displayed on the image processing monitor 37. At this time, an offset circle may be set and multiple echoes may be removed by the method described in the first embodiment.
[0200]
FIG. 21 shows four cross-section candidates to be combined with the three-dimensional image displayed on the image processing monitor 37. Here, vascular α and vascular (blood vessel) β to be extracted are shown, and a tissue of interest such as a tumor is shown as a satin pattern portion.
[0201]
Note that FIG. 22 shows a three-dimensional image that is finally constructed by appropriately setting the cross section, and cross sections A, B, C, and D in FIG. 21 are cross sections A, B, and C in FIG. It corresponds to C and D.
[0202]
That is, the cross section C is perpendicular to the cross sections A and D and includes the cutting line + shown in FIG. 21, and the cross section B similarly includes the cutting line x shown in FIG. The section A is perpendicular to the sections B and C and includes the section line Δ shown in FIG. 21, and the section D similarly includes the section line □ shown in FIG.
[0203]
In FIG. 22, since the z axis is set as the insertion axis of the ultrasonic probe 2, the cross sections A and D perpendicular to the z axis and parallel to each other are radial surfaces, and the cross sections B and C parallel to the z axis are linear surfaces. Set as.
[0204]
In this case, the cross section A is referred to as a radial surface as a front surface of the radial scan, and the cross section D is referred to as a radial surface after the radial scan. Further, as shown in FIG. 22, the cross section B is described as linear horizontal and the cross section C as linear upper, corresponding to the case where the y-axis is set upward and three-dimensional display is performed.
[0205]
By the way, since the z-axis shown in FIG. 22 is set in the same direction as the z-axis shown in FIG. 5, the only section that must be newly constructed in step S9 is a linear surface, and a plurality of radial surfaces are continuous. Just select from the tomographic image data.
[0206]
These cutting lines +, ×, Δ, □ can be arbitrarily set. In practice, as indicated by the arrows in the linear horizontal cross section of FIG. 21, a pointer 43 that can be freely moved in the screen by the control of the pointing device 34 is set on the +, X, Δ, and □ marks on the screen. This is done by moving this mark.
[0207]
Further, the cross section before and after the radial can be rotated around the center O of the cross section at an arbitrary angle. Actually, the pointer 43 is set and moved on the radial surface as indicated by the arrow in the cross section before radial in FIG.
[0208]
When the cutting line moves, that is, when the linear surface moves, or when the radial surface rotates, all cross sections are updated in conjunction with this. The pointer is set and the setting is canceled by a known method such as clicking a button (not shown) provided on the pointing device 34.
In this way, the position of the cross section shown in FIG. 22 is arbitrarily set.
[0209]
In step S10 shown in FIG. 20, the vessel α shown in FIG. 21 is extracted. Specifically, processing is performed as follows. In the method described in the first embodiment, the extraction start point is set in the cross section before the radial, the scan line is radiated radially from this point at an equal angle, and the luminance value changes on the scan line. The point is recognized as the wall of vascular α.
[0210]
Here, the extraction start point is set to the center O. Here, among the quadrants divided by the cutting lines + and x, the scan line is radiated only to the quadrant that is diagonal to the extraction start point.
[0211]
In FIG. 21, since there is an extraction start point in the upper right quadrant, the wall of the extracted vessel α automatically becomes only the portion in the lower left quadrant of FIG. FIG. 23 shows this state. Then, the extracted position of the vascular wall is output to the three-dimensional processing memory 31.
[0212]
Furthermore, this is repeated from tomographic image data corresponding to the cross section before radial to tomographic image data corresponding to the cross section after radial. However, the extraction start point at the time of repetition is fixed at the point set in the cross section before the radial (in this case, the center O).
In step S1 ′ shown in FIG. 20, vascular β shown in FIG. 21 is extracted by the method described in the first embodiment.
In step 2 shown in FIG. 20, the target tissue shown in FIG. 21 is extracted by the method described in the first embodiment.
In step S21 shown in FIG. 20, in the method described in the first embodiment, a portion in the lower left quadrant of the cross section A of FIG. A portion below the cutting line + between □ and □, a portion of the cross section C between the cutting line Δ and □, and a portion on the left side of the cutting line ×, a portion of the cross section D other than the lower left quadrant, and a step A portion in the lower left quadrant sandwiched between the cutting lines Δ and □ of the vascular α extracted in S10, a portion of the vascular β extracted in step S1 ′ between the cutting lines Δ and □, Interpolation processing between tomographic image data is performed on each of the portions in the lower left quadrant sandwiched between the cutting lines Δ and □ of the tissue of interest extracted in step S2, and each three-dimensional model is constructed.
[0213]
Note that gradations from white to black reflecting echo data are assigned as data to the pixels present at the position of the cross section. For example, blue, yellow, and red are assigned as data to the pixels existing at the position of the vessel α, the vessel β, and the target tissue, respectively.
[0214]
In step S22 shown in FIG. 20, the cross-section where the position is set, the extracted vessel α, vessel β, and target tissue are combined into one three-dimensional data space. Note that only the surface of the vascular α is synthesized, and the cross sections A, B, and C are synthesized excluding the inside of the vascular α.
Other operations are the same as those of the second embodiment.
[0215]
When operated in this way, as shown in FIG. 22, the complex positional relationships of the tissue of interest such as vascular α, vascular β, and tumor are assigned colors such as blue, yellow, and red, respectively, and are color-coded from each other. In addition to being displayed on the image processing monitor 37 as a three-dimensional image, a section to which the gradation of echo data is assigned is also displayed at the same time.
[0216]
As described above, in this embodiment, the arithmetic processor 30 and the pointing device 34 function as a cross-section setting unit.
The present embodiment has the following effects.
[0217]
In the present embodiment, the position of the cross section having the gradation of the three-dimensional echo data is set in the three-dimensional echo data by the arithmetic processor 30 and the pointing device 34, and the cross section and the extracted vessel are extracted. Since it is configured to construct a three-dimensional image synthesized with the focused tissue, the portion other than the extracted tissue and the vessel can be observed on the cross section, and the positional relationship with the extracted portion can be easily grasped. . Further, diagnosis can be performed by the gradation of echo data on a two-dimensional cross section.
[0218]
In the present embodiment, the extraction necessary for constructing a three-dimensional image by extracting a scan line only within an extraction range determined by the position of the extraction start point and the positions of a plurality of cross sections. Since the configuration is limited to the range, the processing can be performed at a higher speed than the method of extending the scan line around the entire circumference of the blood vessel. Other effects are the same as those of the third embodiment.
[0219]
(Modification)
In this embodiment, the blood vessel (blood vessel) β is extracted from the three-dimensional echo data. However, a method of extracting from the three-dimensional topler data as described in the fourth embodiment may be used.
[0220]
In the present embodiment, a plurality of cross sections and extracted vessels and target tissue are synthesized. However, only one cross section is set and synthesized into a three-dimensional image as shown in FIG. May be displayed on the display surface 37a.
[0221]
Further, as shown in FIG. 25, a three-dimensional image is constructed by combining the index indicating the position of the set cross section, the extracted vessel, and the extracted tissue of interest by the arithmetic processor 30 and the pointing device 34. The three-dimensional image and the cross section may be displayed simultaneously on the display surface 37a of the image processing monitor 37.
[0222]
With this configuration, the cross-section is not inclined as shown in FIG. 24, and the observation can be performed with the same feeling as in observation with a normal ultrasonic tomographic image. In this case, the image processing monitor 37 functions as a display unit.
[0223]
In this embodiment, the extraction start point is set at the center O in step S10. However, if the position is always on the vessel α on the tomographic image data for performing the processing for extracting the vessel α. It doesn't matter anywhere.
[0224]
(Sixth embodiment)
FIGS. 26 and 27 relate to the sixth embodiment of the present invention, FIG. 26 shows the structure of the tip of the flexible shaft in the ultrasonic probe in the sixth embodiment of the present invention, and FIG. The configuration of the sound wave observation unit is shown in a block diagram.
[0225]
Only parts different from the first embodiment will be described.
[0226]
FIG. 26 is a diagram illustrating the configuration of the distal end portion of the flexible shaft 5 in the ultrasonic probe 2 that performs spiral scanning of the ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to the present embodiment. In the present embodiment, the two ultrasonic transducers 6-c and 6-d are provided so as to be shifted so that the transmission / reception surfaces when transmitting / receiving ultrasonic waves by radial scanning are separated by a distance δ / 2 in parallel. ing. Further, the ultrasonic transducers 6-c and 6-d are attached to the sides where the ultrasonic wave transmitting / receiving surfaces are 180 ° different from each other.
Note that δ / 2 is half of the advance / retreat width δ when the flexible shaft 5 makes one rotation during the spiral scan.
[0227]
FIG. 27 is a diagram illustrating a configuration of the ultrasonic observation unit 3 of the ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to the present embodiment. Corresponding to the ultrasonic transducers 6-c and 6-d, two systems of signal processing circuits of transmission / reception units 21-c, 21-d, frame memories 22-c, 22-d, DSC 23-c, 23-d Is provided. In one of the systems, a rotating unit 55 is provided between the frame memory 22-d and the DSC 23-d.
[0228]
Further, the tomographic image data output from the DSCs 23-c and 23-d is input to the switch 56, and the output to the image processing unit 4 is switched. Further, the rotational position signal from the rotary encoder 17 provided in the drive unit 11 is input to the switch 56.
Other configurations are the same as those of the first embodiment.
[0229]
Next, the operation of this embodiment will be described.
The two-system transmission / reception unit 21 drives the ultrasonic transducers 6-c and 6-d in synchronization with the control of the system controller 26. In one of the two systems, echo data output from the transmission / reception unit 21-d is input to the rotation unit 55.
[0230]
Then, the rotation unit 55 performs coordinate conversion on the echo data so as to rotate 180 degrees so that the directions of the tomographic image data output from the DSCs 23-c and 23-d coincide. The two systems of tomographic image data output by the DSCs 23-c and 23-d are switched to the image processing unit 4 and output by the rotation position signal from the rotary encoder 17 that the flexible shaft 5 is rotated 180 °.
Other operations are the same as those in the first embodiment.
[0231]
The present embodiment has the following effects.
In the present embodiment, 1 is obtained from a plurality of continuous tomographic image data obtained by performing a spiral scan by a plurality of ultrasonic transducers 6-c and 6-d provided with different radial scan transmission / reception surfaces. Since three three-dimensional echo data are configured, one tomographic image data can be obtained at intervals of half of the advance / retreat width δ when the flexible shaft 5 rotates once, and one tomogram is obtained at intervals of the advance / retreat width. Compared to the first embodiment for obtaining image data, the resolution is improved by half.
[0232]
Therefore, the resolution in the insertion axis direction of the ultrasonic probe can be improved without increasing the scanning time.
Other effects are the same as those of the first embodiment.
[0233]
(Modification)
In the present embodiment, the two ultrasonic transducers 6-c and 6-d are provided so as to be shifted so that the transmission / reception surfaces when transmitting / receiving ultrasonic waves by radial scanning are separated by a distance δ / 2 in parallel. However, the number of ultrasonic transducers may be any number as long as it is plural, for example, three. When it is desired to reduce the number of ultrasonic transducers to n, the transmission / reception surfaces may be shifted so as to be separated by a distance δ / n in parallel.
If comprised in this way, the space | interval of tomographic image data can be narrowed further and the resolution can be improved.
[0234]
(Seventh embodiment)
FIG. 28 shows processing for determining three-dimensional echo data in consideration of the influence of body movement in the seventh embodiment of the present invention.
Since the configuration of the present embodiment is the same as that of the first embodiment, it will be omitted.
Next, the operation of this embodiment will be described.
Only parts different from the first embodiment will be described.
[0235]
In the present embodiment, first, the spiral scan of the ultrasonic transducer 6 is repeated n + 1 times without moving the ultrasonic probe 2. Then, three-dimensional echo data consisting of a plurality of tomographic image data shown in FIG. 5 is obtained for n + 1 sets of set 0, set 1,..., Set n as shown in FIG. Is remembered.
[0236]
The arithmetic processor 30 corrects blurring between tomographic images due to body movement before extracting a vessel or a tissue of interest and constructing a three-dimensional image. Specifically, the processing is as follows. First, tomographic image data having the same image number from each set is compared, and tomographic image data when body motion occurs is extracted. The image number of the extracted tomographic image data is No. as shown in FIG. K. In this case, there are n + 1 pieces of image data.
[0237]
The ultrasonic transducer 6 should spiral scan the same part of the subject. The tomographic image data of K should be the same if there is no influence by body movement.
[0238]
Comparison between tomographic image data and extraction of tomographic image data when body motion occurs are performed by comparing the gradation of the echo data at the comparison point provided at the same position in the tomographic image data, that is, the luminance value.
[0239]
Specifically, the average value of the luminance values at all the comparison points is obtained, and the tomographic image data in which the luminance value at the comparison point is greatly different from other tomographic image data, exceeding a preset threshold value, It is regarded as tomographic image data when body movement occurs.
[0240]
Next, the average value of the luminance values of the comparison points is calculated again, except for the tomographic image data when the body movement occurs. In this way, an average value can be calculated from information with less fluctuation.
[0241]
Then, the tomographic image data closest to the average value is obtained as the image No. K representative tomographic image data.
[0242]
The above operation is also applied to tomographic image data of other image numbers, and a plurality of continuous representative tomographic image data are changed to three-dimensional echo data. Then, a 3D image is constructed using the 3D echo data.
[0243]
As described above, in the present embodiment, the three-dimensional data storage device 29 functions as a storage unit, and the arithmetic processor 30 functions as a body movement recognition unit.
[0244]
The present embodiment has the following effects.
[0245]
In the present embodiment, a spiral of an ultrasonic transducer that combines a radial scan in which the ultrasonic transducer rotates about the insertion axis of the ultrasonic probe and a linear scan in which the ultrasonic transducer advances and retreats along the insertion axis. The scan is repeated a plurality of times, the three-dimensional data storage device 29 stores a plurality of sets of continuous tomographic image data obtained by advancing and retreating the ultrasonic probe a plurality of times, and the arithmetic processor 30 stores the three-dimensional data. By comparing the tomographic image data at the same position between a plurality of sets stored in the storage device 29 and recognizing the body movement between the tomographic image data, a plurality of continuous representative tomographic image data in which the body movement is corrected is obtained. Therefore, it is possible to correct blurring between tomographic images due to body motion and obtain good three-dimensional echo data without distortion.
[0246]
Other operations are the same as those in the first embodiment.
[0247]
(Modification)
In this embodiment, the tomographic image data having the brightness value of the comparison point closest to the average value is used as the representative tomographic image data. However, instead of selecting the representative tomographic image data from the specific tomographic image data, a plurality of tomographic images are selected. It may be created by averaging the data.
If comprised in this way, the noise which generate | occur | produces randomly on tomogram data can be suppressed.
[0248]
In this embodiment, since the threshold value used for extracting tomographic image data when body motion occurs is set in advance, the average value and the variance value of the luminance values of the comparison points are calculated. The threshold value may be determined therefrom.
With this configuration, it is possible to set a threshold value in consideration of variations in luminance values.
[0249]
Further, in the present embodiment, the comparison between the tomogram data is performed by comparing the luminance values at the comparison points, and the tomogram data is extracted when the body motion occurs. When it is considered that there is a luminance difference due to noise, the tomographic image data may be smoothed in advance.
[0250]
Further, comparison points may be provided at a plurality of positions, and the luminance values of the comparison points at the same position may be compared separately. Moreover, you may compare the average luminance value of a certain area | region instead of a point. With this configuration, the influence of fluctuations in the tomographic image data such as noise is reduced, and the tomographic image data can be extracted more accurately when body movement occurs.
[0251]
Further, in the present embodiment, a set of a plurality of continuous representative tomographic image data in which body motion is corrected is constituted by excluding tomographic image data in which body motion recognized by the arithmetic processing processor 30 is generated. However, the tomographic image data at the same position may be compared to calculate the two-dimensional correlation function, and the position of the tomographic image data may be corrected by a known method so as to construct the representative tomographic image data. .
[0252]
(Eighth embodiment)
FIG. 29 shows the structure of the distal end side of the ultrasonic probe according to the eighth embodiment of the present invention. The configuration of this embodiment is almost the same as that of the first embodiment, and therefore only different parts will be described.
[0253]
FIG. 29 is a diagram illustrating the configuration of the distal end portion of the ultrasonic probe 2 that performs spiral scanning in the ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to the present embodiment. In the present embodiment, a start position marker 57 and reverse position markers 58 and 59 are drawn on the outer sheath 9 instead of the reverse position marker members 10A and 10B described in the first embodiment.
[0254]
The start position marker 57 and the reversal position markers 58 and 59 indicate the ends of the spiral scan of the ultrasonic transducer 6 described in the first embodiment.
Other configurations are the same as those of the first embodiment.
[0255]
Thus, in the present embodiment, the start position marker 57 and the reverse position markers 58 and 59 function as an index indicating the advance / retreat range of the ultrasonic transducer 6.
Since the operation of this embodiment is the same as that of the first embodiment, it will be omitted.
[0256]
The present embodiment has the following effects.
In the present embodiment, since the start position marker 57 and the reverse position markers 58 and 59 are drawn on the outer sheath 9 that does not advance or retreat, the start position marker 57 and the reverse position markers 58 and 59 are not only at the start of the spiral scan but also during the spiral scan. However, it is possible to always grasp the advance / retreat positions a, b, c, and to know the end of advance / retreat of the spiral scan.
Other effects are the same as those of the first embodiment.
[0257]
(Modification)
In the present embodiment, the outer shaft 9 is configured such that the flexible shaft 5, the ultrasonic transducer 6, and the flexible sheath 7 are advanced and retracted. The child 6 may be configured to advance and retreat. In this case, the start position marker 57 and the reverse position markers 58 and 59 may be drawn on the flexible sheath 7.
[0258]
[Appendix]
1. An ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus comprising: a first vascular extraction unit that extracts a vascular vessel of a subject; and a three-dimensional processing unit that constructs a three-dimensional image of the vascular vessel extracted by the first vascular extraction unit. In
The first vascular extraction means extracts the blood vessel from three-dimensional echo data composed of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and extracts a target tissue from the three-dimensional echo data. A three-dimensional image obtained by synthesizing the vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting unit and the target tissue extracted by the tissue extracting unit. An ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus characterized by being constructed.
[0259]
2. The three-dimensional processing means constructs a three-dimensional image obtained by color-coding and synthesizing the vessel extracted by the first vessel extraction means and the target tissue extracted by the tissue extraction means; The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to Supplementary Note 1, wherein the ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus is characterized.
[0260]
3. Ultrasound image diagnosis provided with first vascular extraction means for extracting a vascular vessel of a subject and three-dimensional processing means for constructing a three-dimensional image of the vascular vessel extracted by the first vascular extraction means In the device
The first vascular extraction means extracts a plurality of the vascular vessels from three-dimensional echo data comprising echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and the three-dimensional processing means An ultrasonic image diagnostic apparatus characterized by constructing a three-dimensional image obtained by synthesizing a plurality of the vessels extracted by the first vessel extracting means.
[0261]
4). The ultrasonic image according to appendix 3, wherein the three-dimensional processing means constructs a three-dimensional image in which a plurality of the vessels extracted by the first vessel extracting means are color-coded and synthesized with each other. Diagnostic device.
[0262]
5. Ultrasound image diagnosis provided with first vascular extraction means for extracting a vascular vessel of a subject and three-dimensional processing means for constructing a three-dimensional image of the vascular vessel extracted by the first vascular extraction means In the device
The first vascular extraction means extracts the vascular vessel from three-dimensional echo data composed of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and Second vessel extraction means for extracting a blood vessel from three-dimensional Doppler data comprising movement information of a moving body obtained by transmitting and receiving sound waves is provided, and the three-dimensional processing means is extracted by the first vessel extraction means. And constructing a three-dimensional image obtained by synthesizing the vascular vessel and the vascular vessel extracted by the second vascular extraction means. 6). The three-dimensional processing means constructs a three-dimensional image obtained by color-coding the vascularity extracted by the first vascular extraction means and the vascularity extracted by the second vascular extraction means. The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to appendix 5, characterized in that.
[0263]
7). Ultrasound image diagnosis provided with first vascular extraction means for extracting a vascular vessel of a subject and three-dimensional processing means for constructing a three-dimensional image of the vascular vessel extracted by the first vascular extraction means In the device
The first vascular extraction means extracts the blood vessel from three-dimensional echo data composed of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and extracts a target tissue from the three-dimensional echo data. A tissue extraction means for extracting a blood vessel, and a second vessel extraction means for extracting a blood vessel from 3D Doppler data consisting of movement information of a moving body obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from a 3D space of a subject, The three-dimensional processing means includes the blood vessel extracted by the first blood vessel extracting means, the blood vessel extracted by the second blood vessel extracting means, and the tissue of interest extracted by the tissue extracting means. An ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus characterized by constructing a three-dimensional image obtained by combining the two.
[0264]
8). The three-dimensional processing means includes the blood vessel extracted by the first blood vessel extracting means, the blood vessel extracted by the second blood vessel extracting means, and the tissue of interest extracted by the tissue extracting means. The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to appendix 7, characterized in that a three-dimensional image is constructed by color-combining each other.
[0265]
9. Additional notes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 characterized in that the first vessel extracting means extracts the vessel based on a luminance difference from the surroundings of the three-dimensional echo data. The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus described.
[0266]
10. The three-dimensional echo data is composed of a plurality of tomographic image data composed of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and the first vascular extraction means includes a plurality of the tomographic images. Extraction start point setting means for setting an extraction start point on the image data is provided, and a scan line is radially extended from the extraction start point set by the extraction start point setting means on a plurality of the tomographic image data. 10. The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to appendix 9, wherein the vascular wall is extracted by searching the vascular wall.
[0267]
11. In the three-dimensional echo data, there is provided cross-section setting means for setting positions of a plurality of cross-sections having gradations of the three-dimensional echo data, and the first vascular extraction means is set by the extraction start point setting means. The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to appendix 10, wherein the scan line is extended within an extraction range determined by a position of an extraction start point and a plurality of cross-sectional positions set by the cross-section setting means.
[0268]
12 In the three-dimensional echo data, provided is a cross-section setting means for setting the position of a cross-section having the gradation of the three-dimensional echo data, the three-dimensional processing means, the cross-section whose position is set by the cross-section setting means, A three-dimensional image obtained by synthesizing the vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting means and the vessel extracted by the second vessel extracting means or the tissue of interest extracted by the tissue extracting means The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to appendix 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, or 9, characterized in that
[0269]
13. In the three-dimensional echo data, there is provided cross-section setting means for setting the position of a cross section having the gradation of the three-dimensional echo data, and the three-dimensional processing means indicates the position of the cross section set by the cross-section setting means. The index, the vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting unit, and the vessel extracted by the second vessel extracting unit or the target tissue extracted by the tissue extracting unit are synthesized. Appendices 1, 2 characterized in that a display means is provided for constructing a three-dimensional image and displaying the three-dimensional image constructed by synthesizing the index by the three-dimensional processing means and the cross section simultaneously. The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, or 9.
[0270]
14 An ultrasonic probe having an ultrasonic transducer that transmits ultrasonic waves to the subject and receives echoes at the tip; a radial scan in which the ultrasonic transducer rotates about the insertion axis of the ultrasonic probe; and Drive means for driving a spiral scan of the ultrasonic transducer combined with a linear scan in which the ultrasonic transducer advances and retreats along the insertion axis, and a plurality of continuous tomograms from echo signals from the ultrasonic transducer In an ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus for obtaining image data,
A plurality of ultrasonic transducers are provided with different transmission / reception surfaces of the radial scan, and a plurality of continuous tomographic image data obtained by performing the spiral scan by the plurality of ultrasonic transducers. An ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus characterized by comprising one piece of three-dimensional echo data.
[0271]
15. An ultrasonic probe having an ultrasonic transducer that transmits ultrasonic waves to the subject and receives echoes at the tip; a radial scan in which the ultrasonic transducer rotates about the insertion axis of the ultrasonic probe; and Drive means for driving a spiral scan of the ultrasonic transducer combined with a linear scan in which the ultrasonic transducer advances and retreats along the insertion axis, and a plurality of continuous tomograms from echo signals from the ultrasonic transducer In an ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus for obtaining image data,
Storage means for storing the plurality of continuous tomographic image data over a plurality of sets obtained by the drive means repeating the advance and retreat of the ultrasonic probe a plurality of times and obtained by the plurality of advance and retreat of the ultrasonic probe; A body motion recognition unit that compares tomographic image data at the same position between the plurality of sets stored in the storage unit and recognizes a body motion between the tomographic image data is provided, and the body motion is corrected continuously. An ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus comprising a set of representative tomographic image data.
[0272]
16. Item 15. The supplementary note 15, wherein a set of a plurality of continuous representative tomographic image data in which body motion is corrected is configured by excluding tomographic image data in which body motion has been recognized recognized by the body motion recognition means. Ultrasonic diagnostic imaging equipment.
[0273]
17. An ultrasonic probe having an ultrasonic transducer that transmits ultrasonic waves to the subject and receives echoes at the tip; a radial scan in which the ultrasonic transducer rotates about the insertion axis of the ultrasonic probe; and Drive means for driving a spiral scan of the ultrasonic transducer combined with a linear scan in which the ultrasonic transducer advances and retreats along the insertion axis, and a plurality of continuous tomograms from echo signals from the ultrasonic transducer In an ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus for obtaining image data,
An ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus, wherein the ultrasonic probe is provided with an index indicating the range of advancement and retreat.
[0274]
18. A drive transmission member for transmitting a driving force from the drive means to the ultrasonic transducer; a translucent flexible sheath in which the drive transmission member and the ultrasonic transducer are contained; 18. The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to appendix 17, wherein a translucent outer sheath covering the flexible sheath is provided, and the index is provided on the drive transmission member.
[0275]
19. The ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to appendix 18, wherein the index is an annular member.
[0276]
(Effects of Supplementary Notes 1-19)
(Effects of Supplementary Notes 1, 2, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)
In the present invention, the first vascular extraction means extracts a vascular vessel from three-dimensional echo data consisting of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject. The target tissue is extracted from the two-dimensional echo data, and the three-dimensional processing unit is configured to construct a three-dimensional image in which the vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting unit and the target tissue extracted by the tissue extracting unit are combined. Therefore, it is possible to grasp the positional relationship between the vascular vessel from which movement information is difficult to obtain and the target tissue. Therefore, for example, it is possible to grasp how much the tumor has spread around the vascular where movement information is difficult to obtain, and for example, it is possible to provide important information when determining the resection range by surgery.
[0277]
(Effects of Supplementary Notes 2, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)
Further, in the present invention, the three-dimensional processing unit is configured to construct a three-dimensional image in which the vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting unit and the target tissue extracted by the tissue extracting unit are color-coded and synthesized. Therefore, it is easy to visually distinguish the vascular vessel from the target tissue. (Effects of Supplementary Notes 3, 4, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)
In the present invention, the first vessel extracting means extracts a plurality of vessels from 3D echo data consisting of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the 3D space of the subject. Since the processing means is configured to construct a three-dimensional image obtained by synthesizing a plurality of vessels extracted by the first vessel extracting means, the position of a vessel where movement information is difficult to obtain and other vessels such as blood vessels You can understand the relationship.
[0278]
(Effects of Supplementary Notes 4, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)
In the present invention, the three-dimensional processing means is configured to construct a three-dimensional image in which a plurality of blood vessels extracted by the first blood vessel extracting means are color-coded to each other. Are easy to distinguish.
[0279]
(Effects of Supplementary Notes 5, 6, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)
In the present invention, the first vascular extraction means extracts a vascular vessel from three-dimensional echo data including echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and the second vascular vessel. The extraction means extracts a vessel from 3D Doppler data consisting of movement information of a moving body obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the 3D space of the subject, and the 3D processing means is obtained by the first vessel extraction means. Since the three-dimensional image is constructed by combining the extracted vessel and the vessel extracted by the second vessel extracting means, the positional relationship between the vessel and the blood vessel where movement information is difficult to obtain is grasped. Can do.
[0280]
(Effects of Supplementary Notes 6, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)
In the present invention, the three-dimensional processing means generates a three-dimensional image obtained by color-coding the vascularity extracted by the first vascular extraction means and the vascularity extracted by the second vascular extraction means. Since it is configured to construct, it is easy to visually distinguish between vessels.
[0281]
(Effects of Supplementary Notes 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)
In the present invention, the first vascular extraction means extracts a vascular vessel from three-dimensional echo data consisting of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and the tissue extraction means The tissue of interest is extracted from the three-dimensional echo data, and the second vessel extracting means extracts the vessel from the three-dimensional Doppler data including movement information of the moving body obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject. The three-dimensional processing means combines the vascular vessel extracted by the first vascular extraction means, the vascular vessel extracted by the second vascular extraction means, and the target tissue extracted by the tissue extraction means. Since the three-dimensional image is constructed, it is possible to grasp the positional relationship between the vessel in which movement information is difficult to obtain, the target tissue, and the blood vessel. Therefore, for example, it is possible to distinguish whether or not a tumor generated from a vessel in which movement information is difficult to obtain has reached the blood vessel.
[0282]
(Effects of Supplementary Notes 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)
In the present invention, the three-dimensional processing means includes a vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting means, a vessel extracted by the second vessel extracting means, and a target tissue extracted by the tissue extracting means. Therefore, it is easy to visually distinguish between the vessels, the vessel and the target tissue.
[0283]
(Effects of Appendix 11)
In the present invention, the cross-section setting means sets the positions of a plurality of cross-sections having the gradation of the three-dimensional echo data in the three-dimensional echo data, and the first vascular extraction means is set by the extraction start point setting means. Since the scan line is extended within the extraction range determined by the position of the extraction start point and the position of the plurality of cross sections set by the cross section setting means, compared to the method of extending the scan line all around the vessel , Processing can be performed at high speed.
[0284]
(Effects of Appendix 12)
In the present invention, the cross-section setting means sets the position of the cross-section having the gradation of the three-dimensional echo data in the three-dimensional echo data, and the three-dimensional processing means sets the cross section whose position is set by the cross-section setting means, Since it is configured to construct a three-dimensional image in which the vessel extracted by the one vessel extracting unit and the vessel extracted by the second vessel extracting unit or the target tissue extracted by the tissue extracting unit are combined, A portion other than the extracted tissue or vessel can be observed on the cross section, and the positional relationship with the extracted portion can be easily grasped. Further, diagnosis can be performed by the gradation of echo data on a two-dimensional cross section.
[0285]
(Effects of Supplementary Note 13)
In the present invention, the cross-section setting means sets the position of the cross section having the gradation of the three-dimensional echo data in the three-dimensional echo data, and the three-dimensional processing means determines the position of the cross section set by the cross-section setting means. A three-dimensional image is constructed by synthesizing the indicated index, the vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting means, and the vessel extracted by the second vessel extracting means or the target tissue extracted by the tissue extracting means In addition, since the display means is configured to simultaneously display the three-dimensional image constructed by synthesizing the index by the three-dimensional processing means and the cross section, the normal ultrasonic tomography is not performed with the cross section being oblique as shown in FIG. It is possible to observe with the same feeling as the observation with images.
[0286]
(Effects of Appendix 14)
In the present invention, a plurality of ultrasonic transducers are provided with different radial scan transmission / reception surfaces, and a plurality of continuous tomographic images obtained by performing a spiral scan with a plurality of ultrasonic transducers. Since one three-dimensional echo data is configured from data, it is possible to improve the resolution of the ultrasonic probe in the insertion axis direction without increasing the scanning time.
[0287]
(Effects of Supplementary Notes 15 and 16)
Further, in the present invention, the driving means combines ultrasonic scanning in which the ultrasonic transducer rotates around the insertion axis of the ultrasonic probe and linear scan in which the ultrasonic transducer advances and retreats along the insertion axis. The vibrator is driven by repeating the spiral scan a plurality of times, and the storage means stores a plurality of sets of continuous tomographic image data obtained by advancing and retreating the ultrasonic probe a plurality of times, and the body movement recognition means The tomographic image data at the same position is compared between a plurality of sets stored in the storage means to recognize the body movement between the tomographic image data. Since a set of a plurality of continuous representative tomographic image data in which body motion is corrected is configured, blurring between tomographic images due to body motion is corrected, and good three-dimensional echo data without distortion is acquired. Can do.
[0288]
(Effects of Supplementary Notes 17, 18, and 19)
Further, in the present invention, the driving means combines ultrasonic scanning in which the ultrasonic transducer rotates around the insertion axis of the ultrasonic probe and linear scan in which the ultrasonic transducer advances and retreats along the insertion axis. Since the spiral scan of the vibrator is driven and the index provided on the ultrasonic probe indicates the range of advancement / retraction, the user can start ultrasonic vibration from the optical observation system of the endoscope, for example, at the start of the spiral scan. The child and the index can be observed, the position of advance and retreat can be grasped, and the end of advance and retreat of the spiral scan can be known. Therefore, the certainty at the time of acquiring the echo signal from the tissue of interest as three-dimensional echo data can be increased, and the examination time can be shortened.
(Effects of Supplementary Notes 18 and 19)
In the present invention, since the index provided on the drive transmission member is configured to show the range of advancement and retreat through the translucent flexible sheath and the translucent outer sheath covering the flexible sheath, the user can Easy to observe indicators.
[0289]
(Effect of Supplementary Note 19)
Further, in the present invention, since the indicator is configured to be an annular member, when the bubble exists inside the flexible sheath, the indicator is used as a bubble trap so that the bubble does not come to the ultrasonic transducer side. Since the ultrasonic wave and echo transmitted / received from the ultrasonic vibrator are not disturbed by the bubbles, good tomographic image data can be obtained.
[0290]
【The invention's effect】
As described above, according to the present invention, the first vascular extraction means for extracting the blood vessel of the subject and the three-dimensional image for constructing the three-dimensional image of the vascular vessel extracted by the first vascular extraction means. In the ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus provided with the processing means,
The first vascular extraction means extracts the blood vessel from three-dimensional echo data composed of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and extracts a target tissue from the three-dimensional echo data. A three-dimensional image obtained by synthesizing the vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting unit and the target tissue extracted by the tissue extracting unit. Since they are constructed, the blood vessel and the tissue of interest can be extracted by the first blood vessel extracting means and the tissue extracting means, and further synthesized and displayed as a three-dimensional image.
[Brief description of the drawings]
FIG. 1 is a block diagram showing a configuration of an ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to a first embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional view showing the structure of the tip side of an ultrasonic probe.
FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view showing a structure of a driving unit of an ultrasonic probe.
FIG. 4 is an explanatory diagram for performing spiral scan by a combination of radial scan and linear scan.
FIG. 5 is a diagram showing a plurality of tomographic image data obtained by spiral scanning.
FIG. 6 is a flowchart showing a series of processing contents performed by the arithmetic processing processor.
FIG. 7 is a flowchart showing processing details of vascular extraction in FIG. 6;
FIG. 8 is a diagram showing tomographic image data in which multiple echoes and offset circles are set in order to remove them.
FIG. 9 is an explanatory diagram showing a state in which an outline of a region of a target tissue is extracted by surrounding it with a pointer.
FIG. 10 is an explanatory diagram for constructing a three-dimensional model.
FIG. 11 is a diagram showing a three-dimensional image displayed on the image processing monitor.
FIG. 12 is a flowchart showing a series of processing contents performed by the arithmetic processing processor according to the second embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 13 is a diagram showing a three-dimensional image displayed on the image processing monitor.
FIG. 14 is a flowchart showing a series of processing contents performed by the arithmetic processing processor according to the third embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 15 is a diagram showing a three-dimensional image displayed on the image processing monitor.
FIG. 16 is a cross-sectional view showing a configuration of an ultrasonic probe and a drive unit according to a fourth embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 17 is a block diagram showing a configuration of an ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus according to a fourth embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 18 is a diagram schematically showing a plurality of tomographic image data obtained by a transducer array.
FIG. 19 is a flowchart showing a series of processing contents performed by the arithmetic processing processor.
FIG. 20 is a flowchart showing a series of processing contents performed by the arithmetic processing processor according to the fifth embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 21 is a diagram showing four cross-section candidates displayed on the image processing monitor.
FIG. 22 is a diagram showing a three-dimensional image that is finally constructed.
FIG. 23 is an explanatory diagram of processing for recognizing a wall of the vessel α.
FIG. 24 is a diagram showing a three-dimensional image in a modified example of the fifth embodiment.
FIG. 25 is a diagram showing a three-dimensional image in another modification of the fifth embodiment.
FIG. 26 is a diagram showing the structure of the distal end portion of a flexible shaft in an ultrasonic probe according to a sixth embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 27 is a block diagram showing a configuration of an ultrasonic observation unit.
FIG. 28 is an explanatory diagram showing a process of determining three-dimensional echo data in consideration of the influence of body movement in the seventh embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 29 is a sectional view showing the structure of the distal end side of an ultrasonic probe according to an eighth embodiment of the invention.
[Explanation of symbols]
1 ... Ultrasonic diagnostic imaging equipment
2 ... Ultrasonic probe
3. Ultrasonic observation section
4. Image processing unit
5 ... Flexible shaft
6 ... Ultrasonic transducer
7 ... Flexible sheath
8 ... Fluid medium
9 ... Outer sheath
10A, 10B ... Reverse position marker member
11 ... Drive unit
12 ... DC motor
13. Radial rotating part
17 ... Rotary encoder
18 ... Linear drive member
19 ... Ball screw
20 ... Stepping motor
21 ... Transmitter / receiver
22 Frame memory
23 ... DSC23
25. Observation monitor
26 ... System controller
27 ... CPU
28 ... Main memory device
29. Three-dimensional data storage device
30. Arithmetic processor
31 ... 3D processing memory
32 ... External recording device
33 ... Operation terminal
34 ... Pointing device
37. Image processing monitor

Claims (4)

  1. An ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus comprising: a first vascular extraction unit that extracts a vascular vessel of a subject; and a three-dimensional processing unit that constructs a three-dimensional image of the vascular vessel extracted by the first vascular extraction unit. In
    The first vascular extraction means extracts the vascular vessel from the three-dimensional echo data including echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and extracts the target tissue from the three-dimensional echo data. Having a tissue extraction means for extracting;
    The three-dimensional processing means constructs a three-dimensional image obtained by synthesizing the vessel extracted by the first vessel extracting means and the target tissue extracted by the tissue extracting means,
    The first vessel extracting means extracts the vessel based on a luminance difference from the surroundings of the three-dimensional echo data,
    The three-dimensional echo data is composed of a plurality of tomographic image data composed of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and the first vascular extraction means includes a plurality of the tomographic images. Extraction start point setting means for setting an extraction start point on the image data is provided, and a scan line is radially extended from the extraction start point set by the extraction start point setting means on a plurality of the tomographic image data. And by extracting the vessel by searching the vessel wall ,
    In the three-dimensional echo data, there is provided cross-section setting means for setting positions of a plurality of cross-sections having gradations of the three-dimensional echo data, and the first vascular extraction means is set by the extraction start point setting means. An ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus , wherein the scan line is extended within an extraction range determined by a position of an extraction start point and a plurality of positions of the cross section set by the cross section setting means .
  2. An ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus comprising: a first vascular extraction unit that extracts a vascular vessel of a subject; and a three-dimensional processing unit that constructs a three-dimensional image of the vascular vessel extracted by the first vascular extraction unit. In
    The first vascular extraction means extracts a plurality of the vascular vessels from three-dimensional echo data comprising echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and the three-dimensional processing means , Constructing a three-dimensional image obtained by synthesizing a plurality of the vessels extracted by the first vessel extracting means,
    The first vessel extracting means extracts the vessel based on a luminance difference from the surroundings of the three-dimensional echo data,
    The three-dimensional echo data is composed of a plurality of tomographic image data composed of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and the first vascular extraction means includes a plurality of the tomographic images. Extraction start point setting means for setting an extraction start point on the image data is provided, and a scan line is radially extended from the extraction start point set by the extraction start point setting means on a plurality of the tomographic image data. And by extracting the vessel by searching the vessel wall,
    In the three-dimensional echo data, there is provided cross-section setting means for setting positions of a plurality of cross-sections having gradations of the three-dimensional echo data, and the first vascular extraction means is set by the extraction start point setting means. An ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus , wherein the scan line is extended within an extraction range determined by a position of an extraction start point and a plurality of positions of the cross section set by the cross section setting means .
  3. An ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus comprising: a first vascular extraction unit that extracts a vascular vessel of a subject; and a three-dimensional processing unit that constructs a three-dimensional image of the vascular vessel extracted by the first vascular extraction unit. In
    The first vascular extraction means extracts the vascular vessel from three-dimensional echo data composed of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and Second vessel extraction means for extracting a blood vessel from three-dimensional Doppler data comprising movement information of a moving body obtained by transmitting and receiving sound waves is provided, and the three-dimensional processing means is extracted by the first vessel extraction means. Constructing a three-dimensional image obtained by synthesizing the vessel and the vessel extracted by the second vessel extraction means;
    The first vessel extracting means extracts the vessel based on a luminance difference from the surroundings of the three-dimensional echo data,
    The three-dimensional echo data includes a plurality of tomographic image data consisting of the intensity information of the echo obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves in a three-dimensional space of the object, the first vessel extraction means, a plurality of the An extraction start point setting means for setting an extraction start point on the tomographic image data is provided, and a scan line is radially extended from the extraction start point set by the extraction start point setting means on a plurality of the tomographic image data. The vascular wall is extracted by searching the vascular wall,
    In the three-dimensional echo data, there is provided cross-section setting means for setting positions of a plurality of cross-sections having gradations of the three-dimensional echo data, and the first vascular extraction means is set by the extraction start point setting means. An ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus , wherein the scan line is extended within an extraction range determined by a position of an extraction start point and a plurality of positions of the cross section set by the cross section setting means .
  4. An ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus comprising: a first vascular extraction unit that extracts a vascular vessel of a subject; and a three-dimensional processing unit that constructs a three-dimensional image of the vascular vessel extracted by the first vascular extraction unit. In
    The first vascular extraction means extracts the vascular vessel from three-dimensional echo data including echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and extracts a target tissue from the three-dimensional echo data. A tissue extraction means for extracting a blood vessel, and a second vessel extraction means for extracting a blood vessel from 3D Doppler data consisting of movement information of a moving body obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from a 3D space of a subject, The three-dimensional processing means includes the blood vessel extracted by the first blood vessel extracting means, the blood vessel extracted by the second blood vessel extracting means, and the tissue of interest extracted by the tissue extracting means. Construct a 3D image
    The first vessel extracting means extracts the vessel based on a luminance difference from the surroundings of the three-dimensional echo data,
    The three-dimensional echo data is composed of a plurality of tomographic image data composed of echo intensity information obtained by transmitting and receiving ultrasonic waves to and from the three-dimensional space of the subject, and the first vascular extraction means includes a plurality of the tomographic images. Extraction start point setting means for setting an extraction start point on the image data is provided, and a scan line is radially extended from the extraction start point set by the extraction start point setting means on a plurality of the tomographic image data. And by extracting the vessel by searching the vessel wall,
    In the three-dimensional echo data, there is provided cross-section setting means for setting positions of a plurality of cross-sections having gradations of the three-dimensional echo data, and the first vascular extraction means is set by the extraction start point setting means. An ultrasonic diagnostic imaging apparatus , wherein the scan line is extended within an extraction range determined by a position of an extraction start point and a plurality of positions of the cross section set by the cross section setting means .
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GB0025646D0 (en) * 2000-10-19 2000-12-06 Reyes Lionel Image producing apparatus
JP4688361B2 (en) * 2001-07-23 2011-05-25 株式会社日立メディコ Organ specific area extraction display device and display method thereof
JP4634814B2 (en) * 2005-02-03 2011-02-23 東芝メディカルシステムズ株式会社 Ultrasonic diagnostic equipment
JP5361113B2 (en) * 2005-10-31 2013-12-04 株式会社東芝 MRI image stitching method and apparatus, and MRI apparatus
US20070167823A1 (en) * 2005-12-20 2007-07-19 General Electric Company Imaging catheter and method for volumetric ultrasound
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WO2008086614A1 (en) * 2007-01-19 2008-07-24 University Health Network Electrostatically driven imaging probe
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US20160007972A1 (en) * 2013-03-25 2016-01-14 Hitachi Aloka Medical, Ltd. Ultrasonic imaging apparatus and ultrasound image display method

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