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Array Processors In Medical Imaging

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000131615D
Original Publication Date: 1983-Jun-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Nov-11
Document File: 15 page(s) / 58K

Publishing Venue

Software Patent Institute

Related People

Peter Alexander: AUTHOR [+3]

Abstract

The desire for multidimensional imaging, fast presentation of results, and higher quality images ensures the continuing evolution of array processors for medical imaging.

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THIS DOCUMENT IS AN APPROXIMATE REPRESENTATION OF THE ORIGINAL.

This record contains textual material that is copyright ©; 1983 by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc. All rights reserved. Contact the IEEE Computer Society http://www.computer.org/ (714-821-8380) for copies of the complete work that was the source of this textual material and for all use beyond that as a record from the SPI Database.

Array Processors In Medical Imaging

Peter Alexander

Numerix Corporation

The desire for multidimensional imaging, fast presentation of results, and higher quality images ensures the continuing evolution of array processors for medical imaging.

Medical image processing has historically included the use of general-purpose array processors and related special- purpose high-speed computational devices. Current imaging modalities include nuclear medical imaging, computed tomography scanners, ultrasound techniques, positron emission tomography, digital radiography, and nuclear magnetic resonance. This article focuses on just three: computed tomography, digital radiography, and nuclear magnetic resonance. These modalities represent the three techniques where the use of APs is most easily justified. In the other modalities, the equipment cost or computational requirements generally demand an alternative, low-cost, customized solution.

The CT scanners produced since the early 1 970's represent a traditional application area for APs, and this discussion will provide historical perspective for this type of imaging. Two new and emerging modalities, digital radiography and nuclear magnetic resonance, or NMR, will illustrate the current trends in AP architectural requirements. Digital radiography involves video input data rates and high-speed image registration algorithms such as rotation and warping. NMR is a diagnostic tool presently in its infancy. It involves three-dimensional image processing with an attendant need for large data memories and the potential need for sophisticated 3-D surface and edge enhancement software.

Diagnostic imaging overview

The essence of medical diagnostic imaging is illustrated in Figure I. Diagnostic imaging describes a potpourri of technologies used to image the body's internal anatomy and functions without invasive surgical procedures. A radiation source, generally an X ray, is propagated through the object being Unaged in such a way that a response function can be measured by a sensor array. Although the object has a 3-D structure, dimensionality is lost in the irradiation/measurement approach. Thus, the output of any measurement sequence is sufficient only for a 2-D perception of the organ being imaged. To overcome this deficiency, the radiation source is usually applied over a large number of angular positions, thereby generating a multiplicity of shadow functions at the sensor array.

Data acquisition follows conventional lines. The acquired data can be passed to either a computer/array pr...