Analysis of multiple shear wave modes in a nonlinear soft solid: Experiments and finite element simulations with a tilted acoustic radiation force.
Tissue nonlinearity is conventionally measured in shear wave elastography by studying the change in wave speed caused by the tissue deformation, generally known as the acoustoelastic effect. However, these measurements have mainly focused on the excitation and detection of one specific shear mode, while it is theoretically known that the analysis of multiple wave modes offers more information about tissue material properties that can potentially be used to refine disease diagnosis. This work demonstrated proof of concept using experiments and finite element simulations in a uniaxially stretched phantom by tilting the acoustic radiation force excitation axis with respect to the material's symmetry axis. Using this unique set-up, we were able to visualize two propagating shear wave modes across the stretch direction for stretches larger than 140%. Complementary simulations were performed using material parameters determined from mechanical testing, which enabled us to convert the observed shear wave behavior into a correct representative constitutive law for the phantom material, i.e. the Isihara model. This demonstrates the potential of measuring shear wave propagation in combination with shear wave modeling in complex materials as a non-invasive alternative for mechanical testing.
Caenen, A; Knight, AE; Rouze, NC; Bottenus, NB; Segers, P; Nightingale, KR
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