Dedicated ultrasound speckle tracking for quantitative analysis of uterine motion outside pregnancy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Fertility problems are nowadays being paralleled by important advances in assisted reproductive technologies. Yet the success rate of these technologies remains low. There is evidence that fertilization outcome is affected by uterine motion, but solutions for quantitative analysis of uterine motion are lacking. This work proposes a dedicated method for uterine-motion quantification by B-mode transvaginal ultrasound. Motion analysis is implemented by speckle tracking based on block matching after speckle-size regularization. Sum of absolute differences is the adopted matching metrics. Prior to the analysis, dedicated Singular Value Decomposition (SVD) filtering is implemented to enhance uterine motion over noise, clutter, and uncorrelated motion induced by neighboring organs and probe movements. SVD and block matching are first optimized by a dedicated ex-vivo setup. Robustness to noise and speckle decorrelation is improved by median filtering of the tracking coordinates from surrounding blocks. Speckle tracking is further accelerated by a diamond search. The method feasibility was tested in vivo with a longitudinal study on nine women, aimed at discriminating between four selected phases of the menstrual cycle known to show different uterine behavior. Each woman was scanned in each phase for four minutes; four sites on the uterine fundus were tracked over time to extract strain and distance signals along the longitudinal and transversal direction of the uterus. Several features were extracted from these signals. Among these features, median frequency and contraction frequency showed significant differences between active and quite phases. These promising results motivate towards an extended validation in the context of fertilization procedures.

LanguageEnglish
Article number8445669
Pages581-590
JournalIEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control
Volume66
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2019

Fingerprint

pregnancy
Speckle
quantitative analysis
Ultrasonics
Singular value decomposition
Chemical analysis
fertilization
Diamonds
fertility
uterus
decomposition
clutter
organs
contraction
diamonds
cycles
probes

Keywords

  • Erbium
  • Image sequences
  • In vivo
  • Medical ultrasound
  • singular value decomposition
  • Speckle
  • speckle tracking
  • strain imaging
  • Tracking
  • Ultrasonic imaging
  • uterine motion
  • uterus

Cite this

@article{89a79287c4514d9786f7929375135b84,
title = "Dedicated ultrasound speckle tracking for quantitative analysis of uterine motion outside pregnancy",
abstract = "Fertility problems are nowadays being paralleled by important advances in assisted reproductive technologies. Yet the success rate of these technologies remains low. There is evidence that fertilization outcome is affected by uterine motion, but solutions for quantitative analysis of uterine motion are lacking. This work proposes a dedicated method for uterine-motion quantification by B-mode transvaginal ultrasound. Motion analysis is implemented by speckle tracking based on block matching after speckle-size regularization. Sum of absolute differences is the adopted matching metrics. Prior to the analysis, dedicated Singular Value Decomposition (SVD) filtering is implemented to enhance uterine motion over noise, clutter, and uncorrelated motion induced by neighboring organs and probe movements. SVD and block matching are first optimized by a dedicated ex-vivo setup. Robustness to noise and speckle decorrelation is improved by median filtering of the tracking coordinates from surrounding blocks. Speckle tracking is further accelerated by a diamond search. The method feasibility was tested in vivo with a longitudinal study on nine women, aimed at discriminating between four selected phases of the menstrual cycle known to show different uterine behavior. Each woman was scanned in each phase for four minutes; four sites on the uterine fundus were tracked over time to extract strain and distance signals along the longitudinal and transversal direction of the uterus. Several features were extracted from these signals. Among these features, median frequency and contraction frequency showed significant differences between active and quite phases. These promising results motivate towards an extended validation in the context of fertilization procedures.",
keywords = "Erbium, Image sequences, In vivo, Medical ultrasound, singular value decomposition, Speckle, speckle tracking, strain imaging, Tracking, Ultrasonic imaging, uterine motion, uterus",
author = "Federica Sammali and Kuijsters, {Nienke P.M.} and Yizhou Huang and Celine Blank and Chiara Rabotti and Schoot, {Benedictus C.} and Massimo Mischi",
year = "2019",
month = "3",
doi = "10.1109/TUFFC.2018.2867098",
language = "English",
volume = "66",
pages = "581--590",
journal = "IEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control",
issn = "0885-3010",
publisher = "Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers",
number = "3",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Dedicated ultrasound speckle tracking for quantitative analysis of uterine motion outside pregnancy

AU - Sammali,Federica

AU - Kuijsters,Nienke P.M.

AU - Huang,Yizhou

AU - Blank,Celine

AU - Rabotti,Chiara

AU - Schoot,Benedictus C.

AU - Mischi,Massimo

PY - 2019/3

Y1 - 2019/3

N2 - Fertility problems are nowadays being paralleled by important advances in assisted reproductive technologies. Yet the success rate of these technologies remains low. There is evidence that fertilization outcome is affected by uterine motion, but solutions for quantitative analysis of uterine motion are lacking. This work proposes a dedicated method for uterine-motion quantification by B-mode transvaginal ultrasound. Motion analysis is implemented by speckle tracking based on block matching after speckle-size regularization. Sum of absolute differences is the adopted matching metrics. Prior to the analysis, dedicated Singular Value Decomposition (SVD) filtering is implemented to enhance uterine motion over noise, clutter, and uncorrelated motion induced by neighboring organs and probe movements. SVD and block matching are first optimized by a dedicated ex-vivo setup. Robustness to noise and speckle decorrelation is improved by median filtering of the tracking coordinates from surrounding blocks. Speckle tracking is further accelerated by a diamond search. The method feasibility was tested in vivo with a longitudinal study on nine women, aimed at discriminating between four selected phases of the menstrual cycle known to show different uterine behavior. Each woman was scanned in each phase for four minutes; four sites on the uterine fundus were tracked over time to extract strain and distance signals along the longitudinal and transversal direction of the uterus. Several features were extracted from these signals. Among these features, median frequency and contraction frequency showed significant differences between active and quite phases. These promising results motivate towards an extended validation in the context of fertilization procedures.

AB - Fertility problems are nowadays being paralleled by important advances in assisted reproductive technologies. Yet the success rate of these technologies remains low. There is evidence that fertilization outcome is affected by uterine motion, but solutions for quantitative analysis of uterine motion are lacking. This work proposes a dedicated method for uterine-motion quantification by B-mode transvaginal ultrasound. Motion analysis is implemented by speckle tracking based on block matching after speckle-size regularization. Sum of absolute differences is the adopted matching metrics. Prior to the analysis, dedicated Singular Value Decomposition (SVD) filtering is implemented to enhance uterine motion over noise, clutter, and uncorrelated motion induced by neighboring organs and probe movements. SVD and block matching are first optimized by a dedicated ex-vivo setup. Robustness to noise and speckle decorrelation is improved by median filtering of the tracking coordinates from surrounding blocks. Speckle tracking is further accelerated by a diamond search. The method feasibility was tested in vivo with a longitudinal study on nine women, aimed at discriminating between four selected phases of the menstrual cycle known to show different uterine behavior. Each woman was scanned in each phase for four minutes; four sites on the uterine fundus were tracked over time to extract strain and distance signals along the longitudinal and transversal direction of the uterus. Several features were extracted from these signals. Among these features, median frequency and contraction frequency showed significant differences between active and quite phases. These promising results motivate towards an extended validation in the context of fertilization procedures.

KW - Erbium

KW - Image sequences

KW - In vivo

KW - Medical ultrasound

KW - singular value decomposition

KW - Speckle

KW - speckle tracking

KW - strain imaging

KW - Tracking

KW - Ultrasonic imaging

KW - uterine motion

KW - uterus

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85052670072&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1109/TUFFC.2018.2867098

DO - 10.1109/TUFFC.2018.2867098

M3 - Article

VL - 66

SP - 581

EP - 590

JO - IEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control

T2 - IEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control

JF - IEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control

SN - 0885-3010

IS - 3

M1 - 8445669

ER -