A three-dimensional morphological reconstruction of uterine leiomyoma pseudocapsule vasculature by the Allen-Cahn mathematical model

Biomed Pharmacother. 2011 Aug;65(5):359-63. doi: 10.1016/j.biopha.2011.04.018. Epub 2011 Jun 12.


Objective: To allow a morphological evaluation of pseudocapsule vasculature of uterine leiomyomas (ULs).

Design: Preliminary prospective study.

Setting: University-affiliated hospitals.

Patients: Ten women with symptomatic myomas warranting laparotomic hysterectomies.

Methods: Pseudocapsules of ULs were isolated from the surrounding myometrium, for a digital reconstruction of pseudocapsule vessels and analysis by three-dimensional structure applying the Allen-Cahn mathematical model. The images were converted in a matrix and an appropriate created software elaborated the images. The "nonlocal" Allen-Cahn mathematical model was applied to reduce the image noise and to regulate vessel outlines obtaining a "clean" image.

Main outcome measures: The geometrical characteristics and morphology of vessel pseudocapsule network of ULs.

Results: The disarray in vascular architecture was evident from the absence of vessel parallelism and variable intervascular distances. An abnormal vascular branching of pseudocapsule was indicated by the different density of vessels per space and some vascular walls without interruption indicated vessel tortuosity. There were vascular spaces, which did not communicate with other vessels ("cul-de-sac" vessels).

Conclusions: Pseudocapsule vasculature showed increase of tortuosity, disarray, abnormal branching and the presence of "cul-de-sac" vessels. Three-dimensional reconstruction of leiomyoma pseudocapsule vasculature network, despite the benign nature of ULs, showed geometrical characteristics of malignant neoplasm vessels.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hysterectomy / methods
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted / methods
  • Laparotomy / methods
  • Leiomyoma / blood supply*
  • Leiomyoma / pathology*
  • Leiomyoma / surgery
  • Middle Aged
  • Models, Cardiovascular*
  • Myoma / blood supply
  • Myoma / pathology
  • Myometrium / blood supply
  • Myometrium / pathology
  • Myometrium / surgery
  • Prospective Studies
  • Uterine Neoplasms / blood supply*
  • Uterine Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Uterine Neoplasms / surgery