Small lesion detection with resolution enhancement compression

Paul Linden, Jose R. Sanchez, Michael L. Oelze

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A novel coded-excitation method, resolution-enhancement compression (REC), increases the axial resolution and the echo signal-to-noise ratio (eSNR) for an ultrasonic imaging system. The REC technique was examined for its ability to improve lesion detectability. The REC technique was used to double the -3-dB fractional pulse-echo bandwidth of an ultrasonic source in both simulations and experiments. The increase in usable bandwidth increased lesion detectability compared to conventional pulsing (CP) techniques and coded excitation using a linear chirp (LC). Lesion detectibility was quantified through lesion signal-to-noise ratio (ISNR), which is a metric that quantifies the ability of an isolated observer to detect a focal lesion against a background. In simulations, a higher ISNR value was observed using the REC technique for lesions ranging in size from 1 mm to 8 mm in diameter. In addition, the eSNR was increased by almost 15 dB. To validate simulation results, a hydrogel-cone phantom was constructed to provide lesions with +6-dB contrast of different sizes. A transducer was scanned perpendicular to the major axis of the cone at different levels to provide lesions of 3,5 and 8 mm in diameter. The ISNR was estimated for lesions of different sizes and using the three excitation techniques, i.e., CP, LC and REC. In experiments, the ISNR was observed to be higher using the REC technique than the other pulsing techniques. The ISNR scores for REC were higher by 15%, 45% and 40% for the 3,5 and 8 mm over the other two excitation techniques. The eSNR was increased by 5.7 dB. Therefore, accrding to the ISNR metric, the improvement in spatial resolution from the REC technique resulted in improved detectability of small lesions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)16-32
Number of pages17
JournalUltrasonic Imaging
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2010


  • Coded excitation
  • Lesion signal-to-noise ratio (ISNR)
  • Pulse compression
  • Resolution enhancement compression (REC)
  • Wiener filter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology


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