Angiogenesis plays a major role in prostate cancer growth. Despite extensive research on blood perfusion imaging aimed at angiogenesis detection, the diagnosis of prostate cancer still requires systematic biopsies. This may be due to the complex relationship between angiogenesis and microvascular perfusion. Analysis of ultrasound-contrast-agent dispersion kinetics, determined by multipath trajectories in the microcirculation, may provide better characterization of the microvascular architecture. We propose the physical rationale for dispersion estimation by an existing spatiotemporal similarity analysis. After an intravenous ultrasound-contrast-agent bolus injection, dispersion is estimated by coherence analysis among time-intensity curves measured at neighbor pixels. The accuracy of the method is increased by time-domain windowing and anisotropic spatial filtering for speckle regularization. The results in 12 patient data sets indicated superior agreement with histology (receiver operating characteristic curve area = 0.88) compared with those obtained by reported perfusion and dispersion analyses, providing a valuable contribution to prostate cancer localization.
|Journal||Ultrasound in Medicine and Biology|
|Publication status||Published - 2013|