We previously developed a new method, namely, the phased tracking method, for accurately tracking the movement of the heart wall and arterial wall based on both the phase and magnitude of the demodulated signals to determine the instantaneous position of an object. By this method, the local change in wall thickness during one heartbeat can be determined. We have now developed a real-time system for measuring change in thickness of the myocardium and arterial wall. In this system, four high-speed digital signal processing (DSP) chips are employed for obtaining the initially developed method in real time. The tracking results for both sides of the wall are superimposed on the M (motion)-mode image in the workstation, and the thickness changes of the arterial wall are displayed in real time. Using this system, reported herein, velocity signals of the arterial wall with amplitudes less than several micrometers can be successfully detected in real time with sufficient reproducibility. The elasticity of the arterial wall is evaluated by referring to the blood pressure. In in vivo experiments, the rapid response of the change in wall thickness of the carotid artery to the dose of nitroglycerine (NTG) is evaluated for a young healthy subject and a young smoker. This new real-time system offers potential for quantitative diagnosis of early-stage atherosclerosis by the transient evaluation of the rapid response of the cardiovascular system to physiological stress.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Acoustics and Ultrasonics