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Italian Journal of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery 2013 December;20(4):225-49


language: English

Vesselomeasure: user friendly tools and techniques for ultrasound carotid artery analysis

Saba L. 1, Sannia S. 1, Molinari F. 2, Swapna G. 3, Sree V. 4, Meiburger K. M. 2, Rajendra Acharya U. 5, 6, William Liboni S. 7, Mallarini G. 1, Shafique S. 8, Nakano M. 9, Nicolaides A. 10, 11, Suri J. S. 12, 13

1 Department of Radiology, Azienda Ospedaliero Universitaria di Cagliari, Cagliari, Italy; 2 Biolab, Department of Electronics, Politecnico di Torino, Torino, Italy; 3 Department of Applied Electronics and Instrumentation, Government Engineering College, Kozhikode, Kerala, India; 4 Global Biomedical Technologies Inc., CA, USA; 5 Department of ECE, Ngee Ann Polytechnic, Clementi Road, Singapore; 6 Department of Biomedical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Malaysia, Malaysia; 7 Neurology Service, Gradenigo Hospital, Torino, Italy; 8 CarVasc Vascular Laboratory, Indianapolis, IN, USA; 9 CVPath Institute, Inc. Gaithersburg, MD, USA; 10 Vascular Screening and Diagnostic Centre, London, UK 11 Department of Biological Sciences, University of Cyprus, Nicosia, Cyprus; 12 Diagnostic and Monitoring Division, Athero Point LLC, Roseville, USA; 13 Biomedical Engineering Department, Idaho State University, Idaho, USA


Atherosclerosis is a disease in which plaque builds up inside the arteries resulting in several complications such as narrowing of the lumen (stenosis), plaque rupture, and consequently heart attacks and stroke. Our group has been actively working in this area for nearly a decade and has developed several proprietary computer aided diagnostic (CAD) tools that assist in every stage of carotid artery analysis. The goal of this paper is to review CAD based carotid artery analysis in general, and to present brief descriptions of the techniques that we developed in this area. Specifically, we first describe the CAD techniques that we developed to handle the pre-processing of B-mode ultrasound images of the carotid artery. We then summarize the most advanced technical solutions that we developed for automated Intima-Media Thickness (IMT) measurement. We also review the most widely used and accepted performance evaluation metrics for IMT measurement, and clinical validation. Subsequently, we discuss the possibility of plaque delineation using contrast-enhanced ultrasound imaging and present a tool for differentiation of symptomatic and asymptomatic plaques. We also present a technique for atherosclerosis monitoring, and finally review the capabilities and limitations of our algorithms.

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