JP5627910B2 - Electronic endoscope system and color image sensor - Google Patents

Electronic endoscope system and color image sensor Download PDF

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JP5627910B2
JP5627910B2 JP2010072074A JP2010072074A JP5627910B2 JP 5627910 B2 JP5627910 B2 JP 5627910B2 JP 2010072074 A JP2010072074 A JP 2010072074A JP 2010072074 A JP2010072074 A JP 2010072074A JP 5627910 B2 JP5627910 B2 JP 5627910B2
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light
color filter
excitation light
image
fluorescent
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JP2011200534A (en
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安土 遠藤
安土 遠藤
村山 任
任 村山
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富士フイルム株式会社
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  The present invention relates to an electronic endoscope system and an imaging device used therefor, and more specifically, a subject is irradiated with light of a specific narrow wavelength band, and reflected light or fluorescent light emitted from a subject tissue. The present invention relates to an electronic endoscope system for photographing a tissue and a color imaging device used therefor.

  In the medical field, many diagnoses and treatments using electronic endoscope systems are performed. In general, an electronic endoscope system is an electronic endoscope that is inserted into a subject and images the properties of the tissue in the subject, a light source device that generates illumination light to irradiate the subject, and an image captured by the electronic endoscope. It comprises a processor device that performs various processes on the monitor and displays it on a monitor. In addition, the electronic endoscope includes an elongated insertion portion that is inserted into the subject, and an image pickup device, a photographing optical system, an illumination optical system, and the like are incorporated at the tip of the electronic endoscope.

  Further, in the conventional endoscope system, in order to observe the natural property of the subject tissue, imaging inside the subject is performed while illuminating with broadband light (for example, natural white light). However, although images taken with broadband light can observe the natural properties of the subject tissue, images taken with broadband light are not necessarily suitable for observing fine tissue properties and identifying tumor tissues. . For this reason, in recent years, by irradiating light of a specific narrow wavelength band and photographing the subject tissue using the reflected light or the fluorescent light emitted from the subject tissue, fine tissue characteristics or tumor tissue 2. Description of the Related Art An electronic endoscope system is known that assists diagnosis and treatment by performing imaging that emphasizes these by improving contrast and the like.

  Observation methods and treatment methods employed in these recent electronic endoscope systems include, for example, narrow band observation methods, autofluorescence observation methods, photodynamic diagnosis and photodynamic treatment, and observation methods and diagnosis / treatment methods. It has been known.

  The narrow-band observation method is an observation method that emphasizes capillaries and pit patterns on the mucosal surface layer by utilizing the fact that hemoglobin strongly absorbs light in the vicinity of a wavelength of 415 nm. Therefore, in the narrow-band observation method, illumination is performed with blue light having a wavelength in the vicinity of 415 nm (for example, 405 nm), and imaging is performed with the reflected light.

  The autofluorescence observation method is an observation method that emphasizes a tumor tissue by utilizing the fact that fluorescent light from collagen or the like is less in a tumor tissue such as a cancer tissue than in a normal tissue. For this reason, in the autofluorescence observation method, excitation light (for example, blue light having a wavelength of 405 nm) that generates autofluorescence light from a fluorescent material is irradiated, and autofluorescence light (for example, green light having a wavelength of 490 to 625 nm) generated thereby. ) Note that the amount of autofluorescent light emitted from the subject tissue is extremely small compared to the amount of excitation light reflected by the subject tissue. For this reason, in the autofluorescence observation method, in order to perform imaging using only autofluorescence light, it is necessary to use an excitation light cut filter that selectively reflects the excitation light reflected by the subject tissue as an imaging element.

  The photodynamic diagnosis method is an observation method that emphasizes a tumor tissue using a tumor-affinity photosensitive substance that emits fluorescent light when irradiated with excitation light. As photosensitizers, for example, porphyrin derivatives such as polyfimer sodium, talaporfin sodium and verteporfin are known. For example, when a porphyrin derivative is irradiated with blue excitation light having a wavelength of 405 nm, the porphyrin derivative emits red fluorescence light centering on a wavelength of 660 nm. In addition, such a photosensitive substance is known to cause a photochemical reaction and generate active oxygen when irradiated with light of a predetermined wavelength (for example, a wavelength of 630 nm to 680 nm) and photoexcited when taken into a tumor tissue. . A photodynamic therapy is a treatment in which tumor cells are killed by cell killing action using the active oxygen thus generated. Since the photodynamic diagnosis method uses fluorescent light in the same manner as the autofluorescence observation method, it is necessary to use an excitation light cut filter as in the autofluorescence observation method.

  As described above, various observation methods using an electronic endoscope system are known. As described above, an excitation light cut filter is essential for fluorescent light imaging such as autofluorescence observation method and photodynamic diagnosis method. Therefore, it is difficult to perform wide-band light observation and narrow-band light observation using the wavelength blocked by the excitation light cut filter for photographing and fluorescent light photographing with the same electronic endoscope. For this reason, fluorescent light imaging is performed using a dedicated electronic endoscope (Patent Document 1). An electronic endoscope equipped with two image sensors is also known for performing fluorescent light photographing and broadband light photographing with one electronic endoscope (Patent Document 2).

  Further, in recent years, even when an excitation light cut filter is provided for fluorescent light imaging, the gain of the imaging signal output from the image sensor is adjusted for each color or shielded by the excitation light cut filter. There is also known a technique in which fluorescent light photography and broadband light photography are made compatible with one image sensor by supplementing color data by image processing (Patent Documents 3 and 4).

JP 2009-160257 A JP 2006-271869 A JP 2003-102680 A JP 2009-236 A

  As described above, in order to perform fluorescent light photography and broadband light photography with a single electronic endoscope, two image sensors are mounted on the electronic endoscope, or the gain of the image sensor is adjusted for each color. Therefore, it is necessary to compensate for the color with insufficient light quantity by image processing.

  When two image sensors are mounted on an electronic endoscope, it is inevitable that the cost is higher than when only one image sensor is mounted. Further, since the two image pickup devices to be mounted are arranged side by side at the tip of the insertion portion, the diameter of the insertion portion is increased. This is a major demerit in an electronic endoscope that is required to have a small diameter in order to reduce the load on the subject.

  Further, the amount of fluorescent light used in fluorescent light imaging is about 1/10000 to 1/1000 of the amount of excitation light. For this reason, the excitation light cut filter used in fluorescent light photography is required to have a characteristic of cutting the excitation light very strictly. When the excitation light cut filter is disposed in front of the image sensor, it has the same wavelength as the excitation light. Light does not enter the image sensor at all. Therefore, in the state where the excitation light cut filter is disposed on the front surface of the image sensor, even if both fluorescent light imaging and broadband light imaging can be performed by the methods disclosed in Patent Documents 3 and 4, etc., the excitation light is almost the same. Narrow-band light photography using only light having a wavelength cut by the cut filter for photographing and fluorescent light photography cannot be performed at the same time.

  In addition, as described above, a factor that hinders both fluorescent light photography and broadband light photography or narrowband light photography to be performed together with an electronic endoscope equipped with only one image sensor is the fluorescence light photography. The excitation light cut filter is always arranged in front of the image sensor. Therefore, in addition to the above-described example, the excitation light cut filter is disposed on the front surface of the image sensor only when performing fluorescent light imaging, and retracts from the front surface of the image sensor at the time of broadband light imaging or narrowband light imaging. It is also conceivable that the excitation light cut filter is movably provided. However, when the excitation light cut filter is movably provided in this way, it is necessary to provide a drive mechanism for driving the excitation light cut filter, which is likely to increase the cost and also to reduce the diameter of the insertion portion. It is disadvantageous.

  The present invention has been made in view of the above-described problems, and is an electronic endoscope equipped with only one image pickup device, and does not increase the thickness of the insertion portion, and it is possible to capture fluorescent light while reducing costs. An object of the present invention is to provide an electronic endoscope system that can perform both narrow-band light imaging and image capturing. Moreover, it aims at providing the image pick-up element which implement | achieves this.

The electronic endoscope system according to the present invention includes a narrowband light illuminating unit that illuminates the subject with blue narrowband light that is reflected or absorbed according to the type of tissue of the subject, and fluorescence included in the subject. An excitation light illuminating unit that illuminates the subject with blue excitation light that generates fluorescent light from a body, and a color imaging device that is used in common under both illumination of the narrowband light and the excitation light. The green color filter or the red color filter including a color filter, a green color filter, and a red color filter corresponding to a pixel arrangement, and including the fluorescent light in a transmission wavelength band except for a pixel provided with the blue color filter. look including an excitation light cut filter filter shielding the excitation light to at least one of pixels provided, the excitation light cut filter, configured the pixel Between the wiring layer photodiode is formed and the semiconductor substrate formed on the semiconductor substrate, wherein a color image pickup element provided semiconductor substrate in contact, the under illumination of the narrow band light color to Narrowband image generation means for extracting pixel data corresponding to the blue color filter from an image picked up by the image pickup device and generating a narrowband image by reflected light of the narrowband light, and illumination of the excitation light A pixel image provided with the green color filter or the red color filter corresponding to the wavelength of the fluorescent light is extracted from an image picked up by the color image pickup device below to generate a fluorescent image by the fluorescent light. And a fluorescent image generating means.

  Further, the phosphor is a fluorescent tissue naturally contained in the tissue in the subject, and the fluorescent light is autofluorescent light emitted from the fluorescent tissue by the excitation light.

Further, the self-fluorescent light has a wavelength that transmits the green color filter , the color imaging device includes the excitation light cut filter in a pixel corresponding to the green color filter, and the fluorescent image generation unit It is preferable that pixel data corresponding to the green color filter is extracted from an image captured by a color image sensor to generate an autofluorescence image captured by the autofluorescence light.

  The fluorescent substance may be a photosensitive substance previously administered to the subject, and the fluorescent light may be drug fluorescent light emitted from the photosensitive substance by the excitation light.

At this time, the drug fluorescence light has a wavelength that passes through the red color filter , the color imaging device includes the excitation light cut filter in a pixel corresponding to the red color filter, and the fluorescence image generation unit includes: It is preferable that pixel data corresponding to the red color filter is extracted from an image captured by the color image sensor to generate a drug fluorescence image captured by the drug fluorescence light.

The phosphor is a fluorescent tissue naturally contained in the tissue in the subject or a photosensitizer previously administered to the subject, and the fluorescent light is emitted from the fluorescent tissue by the excitation light. Auto-fluorescent light that passes through the green color filter, or chemical fluorescent light that is emitted from the photosensitive material by the excitation light and passes through the red color filter, and the color image sensor is connected to the green color filter. The corresponding pixel and the pixel corresponding to the red color filter are both provided with the excitation light cut filter, and the green color filter is used as the fluorescent image generation means from an image captured by the color imaging device under illumination of the excitation light. A self-fluorescent image extracted by extracting the pixel data corresponding to the self-fluorescent light A pixel image corresponding to the red color filter is extracted from an image captured by the color imaging device under illumination of the excitation light with the light image generation unit, and a drug fluorescence image photographed by the drug fluorescence light is generated The medicine fluorescence image generation means to perform may be provided.

  It is preferable to include a therapeutic light irradiation means for irradiating the subject with therapeutic light that excites the photosensitive substance to generate active oxygen in the tissue in which the photosensitive substance is accumulated.

  The narrow band light is preferably blue light having a wavelength of 400 nm or more and 420 nm or less.

  The excitation light is preferably blue light having a wavelength of 400 nm or more and 420 nm or less.

  The narrowband light and the excitation light are blue light having a wavelength of 400 nm or more and 420 nm or less, and it is preferable that the light source that generates the narrowband light and the light source that generates the excitation light are the same.

Further, the blue light transmitted through the blue color filter, and a green light transmitted through the green color filter, the broadband light irradiation means for illuminating the subject with broadband light and a red light transmitted through the red color filter It is preferable to provide.

  At this time, a plurality of types of spectral images of a predetermined wavelength are extracted from images captured by the color imaging device under illumination of the broadband light, and three colors of red, green, and blue are added to the plurality of types of spectral images. It is preferable to include spectral image generation means for generating a new spectral image by reassigning and synthesizing at a predetermined ratio.

Imaging device of the invention, the photodiode on which performs photoelectric conversion, a plurality of pixels including a pixel of the blue color filter is provided, a pixel with a green color filter is provided, and pixels red color filter is provided And a semiconductor substrate provided with the green color filter or the red color filter except the pixel provided with the blue color filter and having the photodiode formed therein , except for the pixel provided with the blue color filter. Excitation light cut filter that is provided in contact with the semiconductor substrate and shields blue excitation light for generating fluorescent light from the phosphor contained in the subject. And.

  The excitation light cut filter is preferably formed by laminating a plurality of types of dielectric thin films.

  According to the present invention, an electronic endoscope equipped with only one image sensor can achieve both fluorescent light photography and narrow-band light photography without increasing the thickness of the insertion section and reducing the cost. An electronic endoscope system can be provided. In addition, it is possible to provide an imaging device that realizes this.

It is an external view of an electronic endoscope system. It is a block diagram which shows the structure of an electronic endoscope system. It is a graph which shows the characteristic of each light source. It is a graph which shows the characteristic of the autofluorescence light which a test subject tissue emits, and the fluorescence light which a photosensitivity substance emits. It is explanatory drawing which shows the arrangement | sequence of a color filter and an excitation light cut filter. It is sectional drawing which shows the structure of an image pick-up element. It is sectional drawing which shows the structure of an image pick-up element. It is a graph which shows the characteristic of a color filter. It is a graph which shows the characteristic of an excitation light cut filter. It is explanatory drawing which shows the arrangement | sequence of another excitation light cut filter. It is explanatory drawing which shows the arrangement | sequence of another excitation light cut filter. It is explanatory drawing which shows the arrangement | sequence of another excitation light cut filter. It is sectional drawing which shows arrangement | positioning of another excitation light cut filter. It is sectional drawing which shows arrangement | positioning of another excitation light cut filter. It is sectional drawing which shows arrangement | positioning of another excitation light cut filter.

  As shown in FIG. 1, the electronic endoscope system 10 includes an electronic endoscope 11, a processor device 12, a light source device 13, a monitor 14, and the like. There are four types of imaging modes: band light imaging mode, autofluorescence imaging mode, and photodynamic diagnosis mode.

  The broadband light imaging mode is an imaging mode in which imaging is performed while illuminating the inside of the subject with broadband light (so-called white light). The natural state of the subject tissue is projected on the image captured in the broadband light imaging mode.

  The narrow-band light photographing mode is a photographing mode in which blue light with a wavelength of 405 nm is irradiated and the subject is photographed with the reflected light. In the image photographed in the narrow-band light photographing mode, the pit pattern of the subject tissue and the blood vessels on the mucosal surface are emphasized and photographed.

  The autofluorescence imaging mode is an imaging mode in which fluorescence imaging is performed. Blue light having a wavelength of 405 nm, which is the same as in the narrow-band imaging mode, is irradiated as excitation light, but imaging is performed with autofluorescence light from the subject tissue. In an image photographed in the autofluorescence photographing mode, tumor tissue such as cancer tissue is emphasized and photographed.

  The photodynamic diagnosis mode is an imaging mode in which fluorescent light imaging is performed, and is used in a state where a photosensitive substance is administered to a subject and the photosensitive substance is previously accumulated in a tumor tissue. In the photodynamic diagnosis mode, imaging is performed using drug fluorescence emitted from a photosensitive material by irradiating blue light having a wavelength of 405 nm as excitation light. For this reason, in an image taken in the photodynamic diagnosis mode, a tumor tissue in which a photosensitive substance is accumulated is shown.

  The electronic endoscope 11 includes an insertion unit 16, an operation unit 17, a universal cord 18, and the like. The insertion portion 16 is flexible and thin, and is inserted into the body cavity of the subject. Further, a bending portion 19 formed by connecting a plurality of bending pieces is formed on the distal end side of the insertion portion 16. The bending portion 19 bends vertically and horizontally according to the operation of the angle knob 21 of the operation portion 17. Furthermore, a distal end portion 22 in which an optical system for photographing, an image sensor, etc. (see FIG. 2) is built in is provided at the distal end of the insertion portion 16. The distal end portion 22 is directed in a desired direction by operating the bending portion 19. The universal cord 18 electrically and optically connects the electronic endoscope 11 to the processor device 12 and the light source device 13.

  The processor device 12 generates an image in the subject based on a signal output from an imaging element built in the electronic endoscope 11 and displays the image on the monitor 14. The processor device 12 comprehensively controls the operations of the electronic endoscope 11 and the light source device 13.

  The light source device 13 is a device that generates light to be irradiated into the subject through the electronic endoscope 11. The light source device 13 irradiates the subject with light suitable for the imaging mode. Therefore, the light source device 13 irradiates the subject tissue with the broadband light in the broadband light imaging mode. In the narrow-band light imaging mode, autofluorescence imaging mode, and photodynamic diagnosis mode, blue light having a wavelength of 405 nm is irradiated into the subject. Furthermore, the light source device 13 may generate red laser light (treatment light) and irradiate the subject. This red laser light excites a photosensitive substance used in the photodynamic diagnostic mode, and generates reactive oxygen in the tumor tissue in which the photosensitive substance is accumulated by a photochemical reaction.

  As shown in FIG. 2, the electronic endoscope 11 includes a photographing optical system 31, an image sensor 33, an analog processing circuit (AFE) 34, an illumination optical system 36, a light guide 38, and the like.

  The photographing optical system 31 includes a lens and the like, and is disposed on the front surface of the image sensor 33. The imaging optical system 31 forms an image in the subject on the imaging element 33 through the imaging window 32.

  The imaging element 33 is an element that photoelectrically converts an image formed by the imaging optical system 31 and outputs an imaging signal, and is, for example, a CCD. An imaging signal output from the imaging element 33 is input to the processor device 12 via the AFE 34. As will be described in detail later, the image sensor 33 is a full-color image sensor in which RGB color filters are provided for each pixel, and fluorescent light is emitted not only to all of these pixels but also to pixels of a specific color. An excitation light cut filter 67 (see FIG. 6) that shields excitation light used for imaging is provided. As a result, the single imaging device 33 can perform all of broadband light photographing, narrow-band light photographing, and fluorescent light photographing.

  The AFE 34 includes a correlated double sampling circuit (CDS), an automatic gain control circuit (AGC), an analog / digital converter (A / D), and the like. For this reason, the image pickup signal output from the image pickup element 33 is subjected to correlated double sampling processing to remove noise, and then amplified, further converted into a digital image pickup signal, and input to the processor device 12.

  The illumination optical system 36 is an optical system that irradiates light into the subject through the illumination window 37, and includes a lens or the like. Thus, the light irradiated into the subject is introduced from the light source device 13 through the light guide 38. The light guide 38 is constituted by a large-diameter optical fiber, a bundle fiber in which a thin optical fiber is bundled, or the like.

  Various imaging modes provided in the electronic endoscope system 10 can be switched at an arbitrary timing by an operation button (not shown) provided on the operation unit 17. Such operation information of the operation unit 17 is input to the processor device 12.

  The processor device 12 includes a digital signal processing circuit (DSP) 41, a frame memory 42, a digital image processing circuit (DIP) 43, a display control circuit 44, and the like.

  The DSP 41 performs various signal processing such as color separation processing, color interpolation processing, white balance adjustment processing, and gamma correction processing on the imaging signal input from the electronic endoscope 11 to generate an image for one frame. To do. The image thus generated by the DSP 41 is stored in the frame memory 42 as an image before the image processing is performed on the DIP 43 (hereinafter referred to as an original image).

  The DIP 43 is an image processing circuit that generates various images according to settings such as a shooting mode by reading an original image from the frame memory 42 and performing image processing, and includes a spectral image generation unit 46, a narrowband image generation unit 47, An auto fluorescence image generation unit 48 and a drug fluorescence image generation unit 49 are provided.

  The spectral image generation unit 46 generates an image to be displayed on the monitor 14 in the broadband light imaging mode. The spectral image generation unit 46 generates a plurality of spectral images of arbitrary wavelength components such as a red component image, a blue component image, and a green component image from the original image (spectral estimation processing). Then, RGB is assigned to these spectral images and synthesized to regenerate one image. The image regenerated by the spectral image generation unit 46 in this manner is an image in which the color, contour, or the like of a specific tissue is emphasized compared to the original image. Note that the wavelength of the spectral image extracted from the original image, the RGB component ratio of the image to be reconstructed, and the like are set in advance according to the state of the tissue to be observed. Therefore, depending on the setting, the spectral image generated by the spectral image generation unit 46 may be the same as the original image.

  The narrow band image generation unit 47 generates an image to be displayed on the monitor 14 in the narrow band light photographing mode. The narrowband image generation unit 47 extracts blue pixel data (hereinafter referred to as B pixel) from the original image, and generates a narrowband image using only the B pixel data. The narrow-band image generated in this way is an image reflecting the degree of blue light absorption by the surface blood vessels of the mucosa and the pit pattern.

  The autofluorescence image generation unit 48 generates an image to be displayed on the monitor 14 in the autofluorescence imaging mode. The autofluorescence image generation unit 48 extracts data of green pixels (hereinafter referred to as G pixels) from the original image, and generates an autofluorescence image using only the data of the G pixels. The autofluorescence image generated in this way is an image reflecting the autofluorescence emitted from the subject tissue without including the excitation light component because the excitation light cut filter is provided in the G pixel as will be described later. .

  The drug fluorescence image generation unit 49 generates an image to be displayed on the monitor 14 in the photodynamic diagnosis mode. The drug fluorescence image generation unit 49 extracts red pixel data (hereinafter referred to as R pixel) from the original image, and generates a drug fluorescence image using only the R pixel data. Since the autofluorescence image generated in this way is provided with an excitation light cut filter in the R pixel as will be described later, the image does not contain the excitation light component and reflects only the drug fluorescence emitted from the photosensitive substance. It becomes.

  The display control circuit 44 reads the original image and the spectral image, autofluorescence image, and drug fluorescence image generated as described above from the frame memory 42, converts them into video signals, and displays them on the monitor 14. The image displayed on the monitor 14 in this way by the display control circuit 44 differs depending on the selected shooting mode, setting, etc. One type of image may be displayed on the monitor 14, and a plurality of types of images may be displayed. They may be displayed side by side at the same time.

  The light source device 13 includes a broadband light source 51, a narrowband / excitation light source 52, a treatment light source 53, a light source switching unit 54, and the like.

  The broadband light source 51 is a light source used in the broadband light imaging mode, and is a light source that generates white light L1 including a broadband wavelength from blue to red, and includes, for example, a xenon lamp. The broadband light source 51 may be composed of a white LED, or may be composed of a combination of a laser diode (LD) that emits light of a predetermined wavelength and a phosphor that emits white light by light from the LD. .

  The narrow-band light / excitation light source 52 is a light source used in three kinds of photographing modes, that is, a narrow-band light photographing mode, an auto-fluorescent light photographing mode, and a photodynamic diagnosis mode, and is an LD that emits blue light L2 having a wavelength of 405 nm. Become. In the case of the narrow-band light imaging mode, the image displayed on the monitor 14 is generated by the reflected light of the blue light L2 emitted from the narrow-band light / excitation light source 52. The blue light to be functioned as so-called narrow band light. On the other hand, in the autofluorescence photographing mode and the photodynamic diagnosis mode, the blue light L2 emitted from the narrow band light / excitation light source 52 is not reflected in the image displayed on the monitor 14, and the subject tissue or the photosensitive substance is not reflected. Functions as excitation light for generating fluorescent light. As described above, the blue light L2 emitted from the narrow-band light / excitation light source 52 is common to the narrow-band light photographing mode, the auto-fluorescent light photographing mode, and the photodynamic diagnosis mode, and is exactly the same. However, since the action required in the narrow-band light imaging mode is substantially different from that in the auto-fluorescent light imaging mode and the photodynamic diagnosis mode, the blue light L2 from the narrow-band light / excitation light source L2 will be referred to as narrow-band light below. When used in the optical imaging mode, it is referred to as narrow-band light L2, and when used in the autofluorescence imaging mode and the photodynamic diagnosis mode, it is referred to as excitation light L2.

  The treatment light source 53 is a light source that generates red light L3 in the vicinity of a wavelength of 630 nm, and is composed of, for example, an excimer laser. Thus, the red light L3 generated from the treatment light source 53 is appropriately irradiated as treatment light toward the tumor tissue after examining the inside of the subject in the photodynamic diagnosis mode. At this time, the red light L3 excites a photosensitizer accumulated in advance in the tumor tissue to generate active oxygen in the tumor tissue. The active oxygen generated in this way gradually extinguishes the tumor tissue.

  The light source switching unit 54 is configured by a lens, a prism, a mirror, and the like, and switches the light L1 to L3 irradiated into the subject from each of the light sources 51 to 53 through the light guide 38 according to the imaging mode or the like. The light source switching unit 54 causes the white light L1 from the broadband light source 51 to enter the light guide 38 in the broadband light imaging mode. On the other hand, in the narrow band light photographing mode, the auto fluorescent light photographing mode, and the photodynamic diagnosis mode, the light source switching unit 54 causes the blue light L2 from the narrow band light / excitation light source 52 to enter the light guide 38. Further, under the photodynamic diagnosis mode, when a dedicated button (not shown) is pressed on the operation unit 17, the red light L <b> 3 from the treatment light source 53 is incident on the light guide 38. The operation of each part of the light source device 13 such as the operation of the light source switching unit 54 and the on / off of the light sources 51 to 53 is controlled by the processor device 12.

  As shown in FIG. 3, the white light L1 emitted from the broadband light source 51 has a wavelength distribution close to that of natural light. Further, the blue narrow band light (excitation light) L2 emitted from the narrow band light / excitation light source 52 has a peak at a wavelength of 405 nm. The blue light having the same wavelength band as the narrow band light L2 is also included in the white light L1, but the amount of light is smaller than that of the narrow band light L2. Furthermore, the red therapeutic light L3 emitted from the therapeutic light source 53 has a peak in the vicinity of a wavelength of 630 nm. The red light having the same wavelength band as the treatment light L3 is also included in the white light L1, but the light amount of the treatment light L3 is very large compared to the light amount of the same wavelength component contained in the white light L1.

  Furthermore, as shown in FIG. 4, when the subject is irradiated with the excitation light L2 in the autofluorescence imaging mode, the autofluorescence light FL1 emitted from the tissue in the subject is approximately green with a wavelength of about 490 nm to 625 nm. Light. Further, when the subject is irradiated with the excitation light L2 in the photodynamic diagnosis mode, the drug fluorescence light FL2 emitted from the photosensitizer previously administered is approximately red light having a wavelength of about 630 nm to 670 nm. The amount of these fluorescent lights FL1 and FL2 is about 1/1000 to 1/10000 compared with the excitation light L2, and is extremely small. Therefore, a color filter is usually provided in each pixel of the full-color image sensor. However, if the green or red color filter has a characteristic of transmitting light in the wavelength band of the excitation light L2 even slightly, R Even in the case of pixels and G pixels, the amount of incident light of the excitation light L2 reflected by the subject tissue is larger than that of the fluorescent lights FL1 and FL2, which hinders fluorescent light imaging in the autofluorescence imaging mode and the photodynamic diagnosis mode. become. For this reason, as will be described later, the imaging element 33 is provided with an excitation light cut filter for cutting the excitation light L2.

  As shown in FIG. 5, on the imaging surface of the imaging device 33, substantially square pixels are two-dimensionally arranged without gaps, and each of these pixels is provided with one of RGB color filters. Yes. For this reason, each pixel performs photoelectric conversion on the light of the color transmitted through the pixel according to the characteristics of the arranged color filter. The pixel arrangement of the image sensor 33 is a so-called Bayer arrangement in which the color ratio is R: G: B = 1: 2: 1 and the arrangement pattern of four pixels surrounded by a broken line is repeated. ing. In the following, G pixels that are adjacent to the B pixel in a predetermined direction (α direction) and are adjacent to the R pixel in a direction perpendicular to the G pixel (β direction) out of G pixels that are twice as large as the R pixel and the B pixel are described below. A G1 pixel is adjacent to the R pixel in a predetermined direction, and a G pixel adjacent to the B pixel in a direction perpendicular thereto is a G2 pixel.

  Further, as indicated by oblique lines, the imaging element 33 is provided with excitation light cut filters 67 in all of the R pixel, the G1 pixel, and the G2 pixel except for the B pixel. The excitation light cut filter 67 is a filter that shields almost 100% of the excitation light L2 irradiated into the subject in the autofluorescence imaging mode and the photodynamic diagnosis mode. It is provided as follows.

  As shown in FIG. 6, the image sensor 33 includes a semiconductor substrate 61, a wiring layer 62, a color filter 63, a microlens 64, a planarization layer 66, an excitation light cut filter 67, and the like.

  The semiconductor substrate 61 has photodiodes (PD) 68 formed on the surface thereof at a predetermined pitch. The PD 68 photoelectrically converts incident light and accumulates signal charges corresponding to the amount of light. Further, an oxide film is formed on the surface of the semiconductor substrate 61 and insulated from the wiring layer 62.

  The wiring layer 62 is provided on the surface of the semiconductor substrate 61, and a gate electrode 69 for transferring signal charges accumulated in the PD 68 is provided between the PDs 68 by applying a voltage to the semiconductor substrate 61 at a predetermined timing. Yes. The gate electrode 69 is composed of a plurality of electrodes made of polysilicon or the like, and its surface is covered with a light shielding film made of aluminum or the like. Further, the top of the gate electrode 69 is filled with a light-transmitting material such as BPSG, and the surface thereof is flattened.

  The color filter 63 is provided on the wiring layer 62 thus flattened. In addition, the color filter 63 adjusts the pitch of the PD 68 so that only the light that has passed through the color filter directly above the PD 68 reaches each PD 68. It is provided in accordance with the pitch of (pixel). Here, since the cross section in the α direction in FIG. 5 is shown, the green color filter G1 and the blue color filter B are alternately arranged in accordance with the pitch of the PD 68.

  The color filter 63 is formed by mixing a transparent resin material with a pigment that transmits light in a predetermined wavelength band and absorbs or reflects light in other wavelength bands. For example, the blue color filter B is formed by mixing a transparent resin material with a pigment that transmits blue light and absorbs or reflects green light or red light. The same applies to the green color filters G1 and G2 and the red color filter R.

  One microlens 64 is formed on the color filter 63 for each pixel (each PD 68). The microlens 64 collects light from the subject and makes it incident on each PD 68 efficiently. The microlens 64 is formed of a high refractive index material such as SiN.

Further, in the imaging element 33, a planarization layer 66 is provided on the microlens 64. The flattening layer 66 is a layer for flattening the microlens 64 and is formed of a material having a lower refractive index than the microlens 64. For example, the planarization layer 66 is made of BPSG, SiO 2 , BSG, PSG, Si 3 N 4 , Al 2 O 3 , MgF 2 or a mixture of such low refractive index materials.

  The excitation light cut filter 67 is provided on the flattening layer 66 obtained by flattening the microlens 64 as described above. As described above, since the excitation light cut filter 67 is provided in the G1, G2, and R pixels except for the B pixel, an opening 71 is formed on the B pixel. The excitation light cut filter 67 is a multilayered thin film formed by laminating a plurality of types of dielectric thin films, and the transmittance of the wavelength band including at least the excitation light L2 is substantially 0%. Materials and laminated structures are defined.

  On the other hand, as shown in FIG. 7, the semiconductor substrate 61, the wiring layer 62, the microlens 64, and the planarization layer 66 are almost the same as the configuration in the α direction described above even in the β direction (see FIG. 5). However, since the arrangement of the color filter 63 is a cross section in the β direction, the green color filter G1 and the red color filter R are alternately arranged in accordance with the pitch of the PD 68. Further, although the excitation light cut filter 67 is schematically described by being divided for each pixel in FIG. 5, the excitation light cut filter 67 is provided continuously on the G1 pixel and the R pixel. Therefore, the excitation light cut filter 67 is provided in a cross-like shape in which the opening 71 is provided on the B pixel.

  The characteristics of the color filter 63 are as shown in FIG. 8, and the blue color filter B has a transmittance peak in the vicinity of a wavelength of 450 nm, but transmits light having a wavelength of about 350 nm to 550 nm. Further, the blue color filter B slightly transmits green light and red light. Similarly, the green color filter G has a transmittance peak in the vicinity of a wavelength of 500 nm and transmits light having a wavelength of about 450 nm to 650 nm. The red color filter R has a transmittance peak in the vicinity of a wavelength of 630 nm, but transmits light having a long wavelength of about 550 nm or more. As described above, although the characteristics of the color filter 63 are different in RGB, there are overlaps in the transmitted wavelength band. In particular, the green color filters G1 and G2 and the red color filter R both have a transmission of about 3 to 5% near the wavelength of 405 nm, which is the wavelength of the excitation light L2. For this reason, unless the excitation light cut filter 67 is provided on the R pixel and the G pixel (G1 pixel and G2 pixel), the excitation light L2 exceeding the light amount of the autofluorescence light FL1 and the drug fluorescence light FL2 reaches the PD 68. .

  As shown in FIG. 9, the excitation light cut filter 67 is a so-called long bass filter, which transmits light in a longer wavelength band than the excitation light L2, and shields light in a shorter wavelength band including the excitation light L2. . Therefore, the layer structure and the material of the excitation light cut filter 67 are determined so that the transmittance changes steeply from 0% to 100% in the vicinity of the long wavelength side of the excitation light L2.

  Here, a long bass filter is described as an example of the excitation light cut filter 67, but the excitation light cut filter 67 only needs to have a transmittance of almost 0% in at least the wavelength band of the excitation light L2. Further, the excitation light L2 is blue light having a wavelength of 405 nm as described above, but actually has a certain wavelength width as shown in FIG. 9 and the like, and the LD constituting the narrowband light / excitation light source 52. Depending on the characteristics, there is a fluctuation in peak wavelength of about ± 5 nm. For this reason, it is preferable to configure the excitation light cut filter 67 so that the entire wavelength width is shielded. For example, when blue light having a wavelength of 405 nm is used as the excitation light L2, the characteristics of the excitation light cut filter 67 are as follows. It is preferable to shield at least a wavelength band of 400 nm to 410 nm, and more preferable to shield a wavelength band of 390 nm to 420 nm. In this case, while maintaining the characteristics of the excitation light cut filter 67 as described above, it can be configured to be thin.

  In the electronic endoscope system 10 configured as described above, the inside of the subject is imaged while appropriately switching between the broadband light imaging mode, the narrowband light imaging mode, the autofluorescence imaging mode, and the photodynamic diagnosis mode. Give treatment. At this time, the electronic endoscope system 10 operates as described below.

  First, when imaging the inside of the subject in the broadband light imaging mode, the processor device 12 controls the light source switching unit 54 to introduce white light L1 from the broadband light source 51 into the light guide 18. Thereby, the white light L1 is irradiated into the subject. Since the white light L1 irradiated into the subject is broadband light as described above, it is reflected and absorbed by the surface of the subject tissue, the surface layer, and the like according to the wavelength contained therein. The imaging optical system 31 captures an image in the subject by the reflected light from the subject tissue.

  At this time, since the white light L1 irradiated into the subject is broadband light as described above, although the absorption rate and reflectance by the subject tissue differ depending on the wavelength, the reflected light from the subject also has a blue component, Green and red components are mostly included.

  The blue component contained in the reflected light is transmitted through the blue color filter B, but hardly transmitted through the red color filter R and the green color filters G1 and G2. For this reason, only the blue component of the reflected light that has entered the B pixel reaches the PD 68, undergoes photoelectric conversion, and is reflected in the imaging signal.

  On the other hand, the green component of the reflected light is transmitted through the green color filters G1 and G2, but hardly transmitted through the red color filter R and the blue color filter B. In addition, the G pixel is provided with not only the green color filters G1 and G2 but also the excitation light cut filter 67. As can be seen from comparison of FIGS. The light cut filter 67 is transmitted. For this reason, only the green component of the reflected light that has entered the G pixel reaches the PD 68, undergoes photoelectric conversion, and is reflected in the imaging signal.

  Further, the red color component of the reflected light is transmitted through the red color filter R, but hardly transmitted through the green color filters G1 and G2 and the blue color filter B. The R pixel is provided with the excitation light cut filter 67 as in the G pixel, but almost all of the red component of the reflected light is transmitted through the excitation light cut filter 67. For this reason, only the red component of the reflected light that has entered the R pixel reaches the PD 68, undergoes photoelectric conversion, and is reflected in the imaging signal.

  When the inside of the subject is imaged in the broadband light imaging mode, as described above, a full-color imaging signal is output from the imaging device 33, and a full-color original image reflecting this is stored in the frame memory. Since the excitation light cut filter 67 is provided only in the R pixel and the G pixel in the original image generated in the broadband light imaging mode in this manner, the image obtained when the excitation light cut filter 67 is not provided in the image sensor 33 It is almost the same image. The processor device 12 generates a spectral image from the original image by the spectral image generation unit 46 and displays the spectral image on the monitor 14. Further, depending on the setting, the processor device 12 displays the original image on the monitor 14. The surgeon examines the subject while viewing the image displayed on the monitor 14 in this way.

  Next, when imaging the inside of the subject in the narrowband light imaging mode, the processor device 12 controls the light source switching unit 54 to introduce the narrowband light L2 from the narrowband light / excitation light source 52 to the light guide 18. To do. As a result, the narrowband light L2 is emitted from the illumination window 37 into the subject. Since the narrowband light L2 irradiated in the subject in this way is blue light having a wavelength of 405 nm, the penetration length into the subject tissue is relatively short, and is reflected and absorbed mainly by the surface of the subject tissue and the surface layer tissue. In addition, since the wavelength of the narrow band light L2 is a wavelength that is largely absorbed by hemoglobin, the reflected light of the narrow band light L2 reflects the contrast between the blood vessel and the surrounding tissue with emphasis. Further, as can be seen from the use of blue light (excitation light L2) having the same wavelength in the autofluorescence imaging mode, autofluorescence light FL1 is emitted from the subject tissue when the narrowband light L2 is irradiated into the subject. . The self-fluorescent light FL1 is blue to green as described above, and its light amount is weak compared with the light amount of the reflected light of the narrowband light L2.

  For this reason, when the subject is irradiated with the narrowband light L2 in the narrowband light imaging mode, the reflected light of the narrowband light L2 and the autofluorescence light FL1 are incident on the imaging device 33. Since the reflected light of the narrow band light L2 is blue light having a wavelength of 405 nm, the blue color filter B is transmitted, but the red color filter R and the green color filters G1 and G2 are hardly transmitted. In addition, since the excitation light cut filter 67 is provided in the R pixel and the G pixel, the reflected light of the narrowband light L2 is exciton cut filter 67 before the red color filter R and the green color filters G1 and G2. It is shielded with. For this reason, only the reflected light of the narrowband light L2 reaches the PD 68, reaches the PD 68, undergoes photoelectric conversion, and is reflected in the imaging signal.

  On the other hand, since the autofluorescent light FL1 is blue to green, a part of the autofluorescent light FL1 incident on the B pixel that passes through the blue color filter B reaches the PD 68 and undergoes photoelectric conversion, and the narrowband light L2 described above. Is superimposed on the imaging signal of the reflected light. However, the signal derived from the autofluorescent light FL1 is weak enough to be ignored as compared with the signal derived from the narrow band light L2.

  For this reason, when the inside of the subject is imaged in the narrow-band light imaging mode, an imaging signal composed of only the blue component derived from the reflected light of the narrow-band light L2 is output as described above, and the frame memory 42 is output. A blue original image reflecting this is stored. Then, the processor device 12 extracts only the B pixel component from the original image generated as described above by the narrowband image generation unit 47, excluding the G pixel component and the R pixel component of approximately the noise level, and narrows it. A band image is generated and displayed on the monitor 14. As described above, the narrowband image displayed on the monitor 14 in the narrowband light imaging mode is an image captured by the reflected light of the narrowband light L2, and thus an image in which the surface blood vessels and pit patterns of the subject tissue are emphasized. And assist in the diagnosis and treatment of such specimen tissues.

  Further, when the inside of the subject is imaged in the autofluorescence imaging mode, the processor device 12 controls the light source switching unit 54 to introduce the excitation light L2 from the narrowband light / excitation light source 52 to the light guide 18. As a result, the excitation light L2 is emitted from the illumination window 37 into the subject. Since the excitation light L2 irradiated into the subject in this manner is the same as the narrowband light L2 used in the narrowband light imaging mode described above, the action on the subject tissue, the reflected light of the excitation light L2, and the autofluorescence light The characteristics of FL1, the operation of the image sensor 33, and the like are the same as in the narrow-band light imaging mode. For this reason, in the B pixel, the reflected light of the excitation light L2 is photoelectrically converted and reflected in the imaging signal.

  However, although the description is omitted in the narrow-band light imaging mode, the self-fluorescent light FL1 passes through the excitation light cut filter 67 and the green color filters G1 and G2 and reaches the PD 68 when entering the G pixel. For this reason, the autofluorescence light FL1 is reflected in the imaging signal of the G pixel. On the other hand, when the reflected light of the excitation light L2 similarly enters the G pixel, it is shielded by the excitation light cut filter 67 before the green color filters G1 and G2, and the excitation light L2 does not reach the PD 68 of the G pixel. Therefore, the imaging signal output from the G pixel reflects only the autofluorescence light FL1.

  Therefore, the image signal output from the image sensor 33 includes G pixel data reflecting the self-fluorescent light FL1. For this reason, the original image generated based on the imaging signal is a blue original image mainly reflecting the reflected light of the excitation light L2, but the autofluorescent light FL1 is reflected in the data of the G pixel. For this reason, in the auto-fluorescent light photographing mode, the processor device 12 generates an auto-fluorescent image by extracting the G pixel component from the original image by the auto-fluorescent image generating unit 48 and displays it on the monitor 14. This autofluorescence image reflects the distribution of phosphors such as collagen contained in the subject tissue, highlights the tumor tissue such as cancer tissue, and assists diagnosis and treatment of the subject tissue.

  In addition, when imaging the inside of a subject in the photodynamic diagnosis mode, a tumor-affinity photosensitive substance made of a porphyrin derivative such as talaporfin sodium is administered to the subject in advance. The photosensitive substance is administered to the subject by intravenous injection, for example. In addition, the photosensitizer is taken up by the tumor tissue approximately 4 times as compared with the normal tissue, and stays for more than 48 hours. On the other hand, the photosensitive substance taken into the normal tissue is excreted within 24 hours, except for specific organs such as the liver and kidney. Therefore, imaging in the photodynamic diagnosis mode is performed between 48 hours and 72 hours after administration of the photosensitive substance.

  When the inside of the subject is imaged in the photodynamic diagnosis mode in such a state where the preparation is completed, the processor device 12 controls the light source switching unit 54 to write the excitation light L2 from the narrowband light / excitation light source 52. The guide 18 is introduced. As a result, the excitation light L2 is emitted from the illumination window 37 into the subject.

  When the excitation light L2 is irradiated into the subject, the reflected light of the excitation light L2 and the autofluorescence light FL1 from the subject tissue are imaged as described in the narrow band light imaging mode and the autofluorescence imaging mode. Incident on the element 33. An imaging signal reflecting the reflected light of the excitation light L2 is output from the B pixel, and an imaging signal reflecting mainly the autofluorescence light FL2 is output from the G pixel.

  Further, in the photodynamic diagnosis mode, since the photosensitive substance is accumulated in the tumor tissue, the drug fluorescent light FL2 is emitted from the photosensitive substance and is also incident on the imaging element 33. Since the drug fluorescence light FL2 is substantially red as described above, it passes through the red color filter R, but hardly passes through the blue color filter B and the green color filters G1 and G2. Therefore, only the chemical fluorescence light FL2 incident on the R pixel reaches the PD 68, undergoes photoelectric conversion, and is reflected in the imaging signal. At this time, even if the reflected light of the excitation light L2 enters the R pixel, it is shielded by the excitation light cut filter 67 and does not reach the PD 68 of the R pixel. For this reason, the imaging signal output from the R pixel reflects only the drug fluorescence light FL2.

  Thus, an original image is generated from the image pickup signal output from the image pickup device 33 and stored in the frame memory 42. In this original image, data reflecting the drug fluorescence light FL2 is stored in the R pixel, data reflecting the autofluorescence light FL1 is stored in the G pixel, and data reflecting the reflected light of the excitation light L2 is stored in the B pixel. Is stored. Therefore, in the photodynamic diagnosis mode, the processor device 12 extracts only the R pixel component from the original image by the drug fluorescence image generation unit 49 to generate a drug fluorescence image, and displays this on the monitor 14. The drug fluorescence image highlights the state of the tumor tissue in which the photosensitive substance is stagnant, and assists diagnosis and treatment of such tissue.

  Furthermore, after observing the tumor tissue in the photodynamic diagnosis mode, when a treatment for eliminating the tumor tissue is necessary, the operator operates the operation unit 17 to emit therapeutic light toward the target tumor tissue. Irradiate. Thus, when the surgeon operates the operation unit 17 and the irradiation of the treatment light is instructed, the processor device 12 controls the light source switching unit 54 to introduce the treatment light L3 from the treatment light source 53 into the light guide 18. . Thereby, the treatment light L3 is irradiated from the illumination window 37 to the tumor tissue. In the tumor tissue irradiated with the treatment light L3, the accumulated photosensitizer is excited by the treatment light L3, thereby causing a photochemical reaction and generating active oxygen. Thereafter, the tumor tissue gradually disappears due to the cytocidal action of active oxygen.

  As described above, in the electronic endoscope system 10, the excitation light cut filter 67 is not provided in all the pixels of the image sensor 33, except for the B pixel that receives the narrowband light L2 in the narrowband light imaging mode. One imaging element 33 is provided by arranging the excitation light cut filter 67 in the G pixel that receives the autofluorescence light FL1 in the autofluorescence imaging mode and the R pixel that receives the drug fluorescence light FL2 in the photodynamic diagnosis mode. Only one mounted electronic endoscope 11 can image the inside of the subject in four types of imaging modes: a broadband light imaging mode, a narrowband imaging mode, an autofluorescence imaging mode, and a photodynamic diagnosis mode. .

  Moreover, in the electronic endoscope system 10, since only one image sensor 33 is mounted on the electronic endoscope 11, it can be configured at a lower cost compared to the case where two or more image sensors are mounted. . Furthermore, the diameter of the insertion portion 16 of the electronic endoscope 11 can be configured as thin as before.

  In the above-described embodiment, one electronic device equipped with only one image sensor 33 has four types of photographing modes, that is, a wide-band light photographing mode, a narrow-band light photographing mode, an auto fluorescent light photographing mode, and a photodynamic diagnosis mode. In order to perform all with the endoscope 11, the example which provided the excitation light cut filter 67 in all the R pixels and G pixels except the B pixel was demonstrated, However, It is not restricted to this. For example, when the photodynamic diagnosis mode is not required and it is sufficient to perform imaging in the three modes of the broadband light imaging mode, the narrowband imaging mode, and the autofluorescence imaging mode, the excitation light is not necessarily cut into the R pixel. The filter 67 may not be provided, and the excitation light cut filter 67 may be provided only for the G pixel, as indicated by hatching in FIG.

  Moreover, although the above-mentioned embodiment demonstrated the example which provides the excitation light cut filter 67 in all the G pixels (G1 and G2), it is not restricted to this. For example, in the case where a wide-band light photographing mode, a narrow-band light photographing mode, and an auto-fluorescent light photographing mode are compatible, it is not necessary to provide the excitation light cut filter 67 for all G pixels, as shown in FIG. If the excitation light cut filter 67 is provided in at least one G pixel (G1 in FIG. 11) of the two G pixels G1 and G2, an autofluorescence image in the autofluorescence imaging mode can be generated. However, in this case, when the autofluorescence image generation unit 48 generates the autofluorescence image from the original image, the excitation light cut filter 67 is provided instead of extracting the G pixel data as described above. It is necessary to extract G pixel (G1) data and use this to generate an autofluorescence image.

  In addition, here, the case where the photodynamic diagnosis mode is unnecessary has been described as an example, but the autofluorescence photographing mode is unnecessary, and there are three kinds of modes: a broadband light photographing mode, a narrowband light photographing mode, and a photodynamic diagnostic mode. If it is only necessary to perform imaging in the mode, it is only necessary to provide the excitation light cut filter 67 only in the R pixel as shown in FIG.

  In the above-described embodiment, the example in which the flattening layer 66 is provided on the microlens 64 for flattening and the excitation light cut filter 67 is provided thereon has been described. However, the position where the excitation light cut filter 67 is provided is described here. Not exclusively. For example, as shown in FIG. 13, an excitation light cut filter 67 may be provided between the microlens 64 and the color filter 63. In this case, since a step is generated on the color filter 64 by providing the excitation light cut filter 67, the opening 71 of the excitation light cut filter 67 on the B pixel is filled with a transparent resin material, a dielectric material, or the like. It is preferable to planarize.

  Further, for example, as shown in FIG. 14, an excitation light cut filter 67 may be provided under the color filter 64. In this case, for example, the upper end of the wiring layer 62 made of PBSG or the like is etched, and the excitation light cut filter 67 is formed there. Similarly to the above-described example, the excitation light cut filter 67 may be provided on the planarized wiring layer 62 and a transparent material may be embedded in the opening. Furthermore, although the example in which the excitation light cut filter 67 is provided in contact with the lower side of the color filter 64 has been described here, the excitation light cut filter 67 may be provided in the middle of the wiring layer 62. Further, as shown in FIG. 15, an excitation light cut filter 67 may be provided on the surface of the semiconductor substrate 61 so as to be in contact with the PD 68.

  For the arrangement of the excitation light cut filter 67 of the above-described embodiment (see FIG. 5) and the arrangement of the excitation light cut filter 67 of the above-described modified examples (FIGS. 13 to 15), the manufacturability and the influence of stray light are compared. Regarding the manufacturing suitability, the arrangement of the excitation light cut filter 67 in the above-described embodiment does not require a change in the manufacturing process of a general image pickup device, and the device in the middle of the manufacture is replaced with the planarization layer 66 or the excitation light cut. There is no need to reciprocate between the equipment provided with the filter 67 and the image sensor manufacturing process line. Therefore, the excitation light cut filter 67 of the above-described embodiment is most excellent in manufacturability because the conventional imaging element is manufactured, and then the planarization layer 66 and the excitation light cut filter 67 are added. It is easy to manufacture the element 33 at low cost. On the other hand, the influence of stray light generated by providing the excitation light cut filter 67 increases as the distance between the excitation light cut filter 67 and the PD 68 increases. Therefore, in order to minimize stray light generated by providing the excitation light cut filter 67, it is preferable to provide the excitation light cut filter 67 on the semiconductor substrate 61 as shown in FIG. In consideration of this, the arrangement of the excitation light cut filter 67 may be arbitrarily determined depending on manufacturing suitability, cost, required optical performance, and the like.

  In the above-described embodiment, four types of imaging modes of a broadband light imaging mode, a narrowband light imaging mode, an autofluorescence imaging mode, and a photodynamic diagnosis mode are prepared, and the inside of the subject is imaged while switching between these imaging modes. Although an example has been described, the present invention is not limited to this. As described in the above embodiment, the blue light L2 (narrowband light, excitation light) having the same wavelength is used for each of the narrowband light photographing mode, the autofluorescent light photographing mode, and the photodynamic diagnosis mode. Further, in the narrow-band light imaging mode, the B pixel data of the original image is extracted to generate a narrow-band image, and in the auto-fluorescent light imaging mode, the G-pixel data of the original image is extracted to generate the auto-fluorescence image, In the photodynamic diagnosis mode, R pixel data of the original image is extracted to generate a drug fluorescence light image, and therefore the pixel data of the original image used in these three imaging modes are different. Therefore, if the narrow-band image generation unit 47 and the self-fluorescence image generation unit 48 are provided, a narrow-band image and an auto-fluorescence image can be generated and displayed at the same time without distinction as shooting modes. In addition, if a drug fluorescence image generation unit 49 is provided and a photosensitive substance is previously administered to the subject, a drug fluorescence image can be generated and displayed simultaneously with the narrowband image and the autofluorescence image. In addition, the photographing mode is distinguished as in the above-described embodiment, and the narrow-band light photographing mode is selected so that the self-fluorescent image and the drug fluorescent image can be immediately displayed on the monitor 14 according to the operator's request. Even in such a case, it is preferable to generate an autofluorescence image or a drug fluorescence image. The same applies to the autofluorescence photographing mode and the photodynamic diagnosis mode.

  In the above-described embodiment, an example of the excitation light cut filter 67 has been described. However, the excitation light cut filter 67 only needs to have the characteristics illustrated in FIG. For this reason, the excitation light cut filter 67 may absorb the excitation light L2, or may reflect the excitation light L2.

  In the above-described embodiment, as an example of the excitation light cut filter 67, an example in which the transmittance changes steeply from 0% to 100% in the vicinity of the long wavelength side of the excitation light L2 is described. As long as the excitation light L2 can be shielded to such an extent that fluorescent light photography can be performed, it is not always necessary to strictly vary from 0% to 100%. Further, in FIG. 9, as an example, an example in which the transmittance varies from 0% to 100% in a very short wavelength range has been described. However, the wavelength range in which the transmittance varies may be in a range that can be actually manufactured. It is particularly preferable to change sharply in a very narrow wavelength range as in the above-described embodiment.

  The excitation light cut filter 67 described in the above embodiment can be manufactured by a known film forming technique such as a vacuum evaporation method or a sputtering method. The excitation light cut filter 67 can also be patterned using a known patterning technique such as photolithography or electron beam lithography.

  In the above-described embodiment, it has been described that the excitation light cut filter 67 is formed by laminating dielectric thin films. However, the excitation light cut filter 67 may have the characteristics shown in FIG. The configuration is not limited to this example. For example, the excitation light cut filter 67 may be formed of a resin material mixed with a predetermined pigment, like the color filter 63.

  In addition, since the imaging element 33 described in the above-described embodiment is provided with the planarization layer 66 on the microlens 64, the shape of the microlens 64 is configured to function appropriately in the state where the planarization layer 66 is provided. It is preferable to set the surface shape.

  In the above-described embodiment, the porphyrin derivative such as polyfimer sodium, talaporfin sodium, verteporfin and the like has been exemplified as the photosensitive substance to be administered to the subject in the photodynamic diagnosis mode. However, the present invention is not limited thereto. Other photosensitive materials may be used. In this case, in imaging and treatment in the photodynamic diagnosis mode, it is necessary to irradiate excitation light and treatment light having a wavelength according to the photosensitive substance to be administered, for example, by preparing a new light source.

  In the above-described embodiment, the example in which the narrow-band light / excitation light source 52 outputs only the blue light L2 having a wavelength of 405 nm has been described. However, the present invention is not limited thereto, and for example, a laser light source having a variable output wavelength, You may comprise with the light source etc. which combined the white light source and the color selection filter. In this case, the narrowband light L2 and the excitation light L2 can be adjusted according to the tissue to be observed and its mode. In addition, new photosensitive substances are being developed every day, and these new photosensitive substances can be used. The same applies to the treatment light source 53. In the above-described embodiment, an example in which the narrowband light / excitation light source 52 is configured by an LD has been described, but an LED may be used.

  In the above embodiment, the example in which the narrowband light / excitation light source 52 outputs the blue light L2 having a wavelength of 405 nm has been described. However, the wavelength of the blue light L2 output from the narrowband light / excitation light source 52 is 405 nm. Not limited to. For example, in the visible light wavelength band, hemoglobin has absorption peaks at wavelengths of 415 nm and 540 nm. Therefore, in the narrow-band light imaging mode, it is only necessary to irradiate the subject with blue light having a wavelength of about 415 nm. Examples of fluorescent substances naturally contained in the subject include collagen and elastin. Collagen and elastin emit autofluorescent light having a wavelength of 490 nm to 625 nm by blue excitation light having a wavelength of approximately 390 nm to 470 nm, depending on the specific type. For example, the collagen used in the narrow-band light imaging mode is of a type that emits green autofluorescent light having a wavelength of 530 nm by excitation light having a wavelength of about 450 nm. Similarly, elastin used in the narrow-band light imaging mode is In general, this type emits green autofluorescent light having a wavelength of 520 nm by excitation light having a wavelength of 450 nm. Therefore, in order to efficiently generate self-fluorescent light from such a fluorescent material, it is preferable to use excitation light having a wavelength near 450 nm.

  Further, as described above, when separate light sources are used for the narrow-band light photographing mode and the auto-fluorescent light photographing mode, the wavelength of the narrow-band light used in the narrow-band light photographing mode should be 350 nm or more and 480 nm or less. What is necessary is just to be 390 nm or more and 445 nm or less. Similarly, the wavelength of the excitation light used in the autofluorescence imaging mode may be 350 nm or more and 500 nm or less, and preferably 390 nm or more and 470 nm or less. In particular, when the narrow-band light source and the excitation light source are the same as the narrow-band light / excitation light source 52 of the above-described embodiment, the blue light L2 generated by this light source has a wavelength of 380 nm to 450 nm. It is preferable that the wavelength is 400 nm or more and 420 nm or less. In addition, since it is widely used in other fields, is excellent in manufacturing suitability, and is inexpensive, an LD that emits blue light L2 having a wavelength of 405 nm as in the above-described embodiment is used for the narrowband / excitation light source 52. Is preferred.

  Furthermore, in the above-described embodiment, on the premise that the blue light L2 having a wavelength of 405 nm is output from the narrow band light / excitation light source 52, the fluctuation of the peak wavelength and the wavelength width of the excitation light cut filter 67 are considered. Although the example of the preferable characteristic (preferred example of the wavelength band to be shielded) has been described, when using the blue light L2 other than the wavelength of 405 nm as described above, similarly, the fluctuation of the peak wavelength and the wavelength width are considered. Thus, it is preferable to determine the characteristics of the excitation light cut filter 67.

  In the above-described embodiment, since the narrow-band light L2 used in the narrow-band light imaging mode and the excitation light L2 used in the autofluorescence imaging mode and the photodynamic diagnosis mode have the same wavelength, they are common in these imaging modes. The example of providing the narrow-band light / excitation light source 52 used for the above has been described. However, when the wavelength of light required for each operation mode is different, a dedicated light source may be provided for each.

  In the above-described embodiment, the primary color (RGB) color filter has been described as an example of the color filter 63. However, the present invention is also applicable to the case where a complementary color filter composed of three colors of cyan, magenta, and yellow is used. The invention can be suitably used.

  In the above-described embodiment, the Bayer array has been described as an example of the pixel array of the image sensor 33. However, the present invention is preferably used even with other pixel arrays such as a so-called honeycomb array. it can.

  In the above-described embodiment, the imaging element 33 is described as a CCD type imaging element. However, the imaging element 33 is not limited to this, and the imaging element mounted on the electronic endoscope 11 is another known imaging element such as a CMOS type. There may be.

DESCRIPTION OF SYMBOLS 10 Electronic endoscope system 11 Electronic endoscope 12 Processor apparatus 13 Light source apparatus 14 Monitor 16 Insertion part 17 Operation part 18 Universal code 19 Bending part 21 Angle knob 22 Tip part 31 Shooting optical system 32 Shooting window 33 Imaging element 34 Analog processing Circuit (AFE)
36 Illumination optical system 37 Illumination window 38 Light guide 41 Digital signal processing circuit (DSP)
42 frame memory 43 digital image processing circuit (DIP)
44 Display Control Circuit 46 Spectral Image Generation Unit 47 Narrow Band Image Generation Unit 48 Autofluorescence Image Generation Unit 49 Drug Fluorescence Image Generation Unit 51 Wide Band Light Source 52 Narrow Band Light / Excitation Light Light Source 53 Treatment Light Light Source 54 Light Source Switching Unit 61 Semiconductor Substrate 62 Wiring layer 63 Color filter 64 Micro lens 66 Flattening layer 67 Excitation light cut filter 68 Photodiode (PD)
69 Gate electrode 71 Opening

Claims (14)

  1. Narrow-band light illuminating means for illuminating the subject with blue narrow-band light that is reflected or absorbed according to the type of tissue of the subject;
    Excitation light illuminating means for illuminating the object with blue excitation light that generates fluorescent light from a phosphor contained in the object;
    A color imaging device that is used in common under both illumination of the narrowband light and the excitation light, and includes a blue color filter, a green color filter, and a red color filter corresponding to a pixel arrangement, and the blue color filter except pixels provided, see contains the green color filter or excitation light cut filter that shields the excitation light to at least one of the pixels the red color filter is provided comprising the fluorescent light in the transmission wavelength band The color image sensor in which the excitation light cut filter is provided in contact with the semiconductor substrate between a semiconductor substrate on which a photodiode constituting the pixel is formed and a wiring layer formed on the semiconductor substrate. When,
    Narrowband that extracts pixel data corresponding to the blue color filter from an image captured by the color imaging device under illumination of the narrowband light and generates a narrowband image by reflected light of the narrowband light Image generating means;
    Data of pixels provided with the green color filter or the red color filter corresponding to the wavelength of the fluorescent light is extracted from an image picked up by the color imaging device under illumination of the excitation light, and the fluorescent light is used. A fluorescent image generating means for generating a fluorescent image;
    An electronic endoscope system comprising:
  2.   2. The fluorescent material according to claim 1, wherein the fluorescent material is a fluorescent tissue naturally contained in a tissue in the subject, and the fluorescent light is autofluorescent light emitted from the fluorescent tissue by the excitation light. Electronic endoscope system.
  3. The autofluorescent light is a wavelength that transmits the green color filter,
    The color imaging device includes the excitation light cut filter in pixels corresponding to the green color filter,
    The fluorescent image generating means extracts pixel data corresponding to the green color filter from an image captured by the color imaging device, and generates an autofluorescent image captured by the autofluorescent light. The electronic endoscope system according to claim 2.
  4.   2. The electron according to claim 1, wherein the phosphor is a photosensitizer previously administered to the subject, and the fluorescent light is drug fluorescence emitted from the photosensitizer by the excitation light. Endoscope system.
  5. The drug fluorescence light is a wavelength that transmits the red color filter,
    The color imaging device includes the excitation light cut filter in pixels corresponding to the red color filter,
    The fluorescent image generation unit extracts pixel data corresponding to the red color filter from an image captured by the color imaging device, and generates a drug fluorescence image captured by the drug fluorescence light. The electronic endoscope system according to claim 4.
  6. The phosphor is a fluorescent tissue naturally contained in the tissue in the subject or a photosensitizer previously administered to the subject, and the fluorescent light is emitted from the fluorescent tissue by the excitation light, Autofluorescence light transmitted through the green color filter, or drug fluorescence light emitted from the photosensitive material by the excitation light and transmitted through the red color filter,
    The color imaging device includes the excitation light cut filter in both a pixel corresponding to the green color filter and a pixel corresponding to the red color filter,
    As the fluorescence image generation means , the pixel data corresponding to the green color filter is extracted from the image captured by the color imaging device under illumination of the excitation light, and the autofluorescence image captured by the autofluorescence light is extracted. Autofluorescence image generation means to generate, and extract the pixel data corresponding to the red color filter from the image captured by the color imaging device under illumination of the excitation light, and drug fluorescence imaged by the drug fluorescence light Drug fluorescence image generation means for generating an image;
    The electronic endoscope system according to claim 1, further comprising:
  7.   7. The method according to claim 4, further comprising therapeutic light irradiation means for irradiating the subject with therapeutic light that excites the photosensitive substance to generate active oxygen in a tissue in which the photosensitive substance is accumulated. An electronic endoscope system according to claim 1.
  8.   8. The electronic endoscope system according to claim 1, wherein the narrowband light is blue light having a wavelength of 400 nm or more and 420 nm or less.
  9.   9. The electronic endoscope system according to claim 1, wherein the excitation light is blue light having a wavelength of 400 nm or more and 420 nm or less.
  10.   The narrow-band light and the excitation light are blue light having a wavelength of 400 nm or more and 420 nm or less, and the light source that generates the narrow-band light and the light source that generates the excitation light are the same. Item 10. The electronic endoscope system according to any one of Items 1 to 9.
  11.   Broadband light irradiating means for illuminating the subject with broadband light including blue light transmitted through the blue color filter, green light transmitted through the green color filter, and red light transmitted through the red color filter. The electronic endoscope system according to any one of claims 1 to 10.
  12.   A plurality of types of spectral images having a predetermined wavelength are extracted from images captured by the color imaging device under illumination of the broadband light, and three colors of red, green, and blue are added to the plurality of types of spectral images at a predetermined ratio. The electronic endoscope system according to claim 11, further comprising spectral image generation means for generating a new spectral image by reassigning and synthesizing at step S13.
  13. A photodiode on performing photoelectric conversion, and a plurality of pixels including a pixel of the blue color filter is provided, a pixel with a green color filter is provided, and pixels red color filter is provided,
    Except for the pixel provided with the blue color filter among the plurality of pixels, the semiconductor substrate provided on the pixel on which the green color filter or the red color filter is disposed, and on which the photodiode is formed; and An excitation light cut filter that is provided in contact with the semiconductor substrate between the wiring layer formed on the semiconductor substrate and shields blue excitation light for generating fluorescent light from the phosphor contained in the subject;
    A color imaging device for an electronic endoscope, comprising:
  14. The color imaging element for an electronic endoscope according to claim 13, wherein the excitation light cut filter is formed by laminating a plurality of types of dielectric thin films.
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