Quantitative ultrasound backscatter for pulsed cavitational ultrasound therapy- histotripsy

IEEE Trans Ultrason Ferroelectr Freq Control. 2009 May;56(5):995-1005. doi: 10.1109/tuffc.2009.1131.


Histotripsy is a well-controlled ultrasonic tissue ablation technology that mechanically and progressively fractionates tissue structures using cavitation. The fractionated tissue volume can be monitored with ultrasound imaging because a significant ultrasound backscatter reduction occurs.This paper correlates the ultrasound backscatter reduction with the degree of tissue fractionation characterized by the percentage of remaining normal-appearing cell nuclei on histology.Different degrees of tissue fractionation were generated in vitro in freshly excised porcine kidneys by varying the number of therapeutic ultrasound pulses from 100 to 2000 pulses per treatment location. All ultrasound pulses were 15 cycles at 1 MHz delivered at 100 Hz pulse repetition frequency and 19 MPa peak negative pressure. The results showed that the normalized backscatter intensity decreased exponentially with increasing number of pulses. Correspondingly, the percentage of normal appearing nuclei in the treated area decreased exponentially as well. A linear correlation existed between the normalized backscatter intensity and the percentage of normal appearing cell nuclei in the treated region. This suggests that the normalized backscatter intensity may be a potential quantitative real-time feedback parameter for histotripsy-induced tissue fractionation. This quantitative feedback may allow the prediction of local clinical outcomes, i.e., when a tissue volume has been sufficiently treated.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Kidney Diseases / therapy*
  • Kidney* / diagnostic imaging
  • Swine
  • Ultrasonic Therapy*
  • Ultrasonography