Inverse imaging of the breast with a material classification technique
Manry, Charles W.
Broschat, Shira L.
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In recent publications [Chew et al., IEEE Trans. Blomed. Eng. BME-9, 218–225 (1990); Borup et al., Ultrason. Imaging14, 69–85 (1992)] the inverse imaging problem has been solved by means of a two-step iterative method. In this paper, a third step is introduced for ultrasound imaging of the breast. In this step, which is based on statistical pattern recognition, classification of tissue types and a priori knowledge of the anatomy of the breast are integrated into the iterative method. Use of this material classification technique results in more rapid convergence to the inverse solution—approximately 40% fewer iterations are required—as well as greater accuracy. In addition, tumors are detected early in the reconstruction process. Results for reconstructions of a simple two-dimensional model of the human breast are presented. These reconstructions are extremely accurate when system noise and variations in tissue parameters are not too great. However, for the algorithm used, degradation of the reconstructions and divergence from the correct solution occur when system noise and variations in parameters exceed threshold values. Even in this case, however, tumors are still identified within a few iterations.