Determination of a potential quantitative measure of the state of the lung using lung ultrasound spectroscopy

Libertario Demi, Wim van Hoeve, Ruud J.G. van Sloun, Gino Soldati, Marcello Demi

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B-lines are ultrasound-imaging artifacts, which correlate with several lung-pathologies. However, their understanding and characterization is still largely incomplete. To further study B-lines, lung-phantoms were developed by trapping a layer of microbubbles in tissue-mimicking gel. To simulate the alveolar size reduction typical of various pathologies, 170 and 80 μm bubbles were used for phantom-Type 1 and 2, respectively. A normal alveolar diameter is approximately 280 μm. A LA332 linear-Array connected to the ULA-OP platform was used for imaging. Standard ultrasound (US) imaging at 4.5 MHz was performed. Subsequently, a multi-frequency approach was used where images were sequentially generated using orthogonal sub-bands centered at different frequencies (3, 4, 5, and 6 MHz). Results show that B-lines appear predominantly with phantom-Type 2. Moreover, the multi-frequency approach revealed that the B-lines originate from a specific portion of the US spectrum. These results can give rise to significant clinical applications since, if further confirmed by extensive in-vivo studies, the native frequency of B-lines could provide a quantitative-measure of the state of the lung.

Original languageEnglish
Article number12746
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2017


  • Lung/diagnostic imaging
  • Microbubbles
  • Phantoms, Imaging
  • Spectrum Analysis
  • Ultrasonography
  • Video Recording


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