Internal deformation of a uniform elastic solid by acoustic radiation force.
Tissue elasticity estimation is a growing area of ultrasound research. One proposed approach would apply acoustic radiation force to displace tissue and use ultrasonic motion tracking techniques to measure the resultant displacement. Such a technique might allow noninvasive imaging of tissue elastic properties. The potential of this method will be limited by the magnitude of displacements which can be generated at reasonable acoustic intensity levels. This paper presents methods for estimating the internal displacements induced in an elastic solid by acoustic radiation force. These methods predict displacements on the order of 400 microns in the human vitreous body, 0.008 micron in human breast, and 0.020 micron in human liver at an acoustic intensity of 1.0 W/cm2 (in water) and an operating frequency of 10 MHz. While the displacement generated in the vitreous should be readily detectable using ultrasonic methods, the displacements generated in the breast and liver will be much more difficult to detect. Methods are also developed for predicting the time dependent temperature increases associated with attenuated acoustic fields in the absence of perfusion. These results indicate promise for radiation force imaging in the vitreous, but potential difficulties in applying these techniques in other parts of the body.
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