Purpose: Intraoperative optical coherence tomography (iOCT) is an increasingly available imaging technique for ophthalmic microsurgery that provides high-resolution cross-sectional information of the surgical scene. We propose to build on its desirable qualities and present a method for tracking the orientation and location of a surgical needle. Thereby, we enable the direct analysis of instrument-tissue interaction directly in OCT space without complex multimodal calibration that would be required with traditional instrument tracking methods.
Method: The intersection of the needle with the iOCT scan is detected by a peculiar multistep ellipse fitting that takes advantage of the directionality of the modality. The geometric modeling allows us to use the ellipse parameters and provide them into a latency-aware estimator to infer the 5DOF pose during needle movement.
Results: Experiments on phantom data and ex vivo porcine eyes indicate that the algorithm retains angular precision especially during lateral needle movement and provides a more robust and consistent estimation than baseline methods.
Conclusion: Using solely cross-sectional iOCT information, we are able to successfully and robustly estimate a 5DOF pose of the instrument in less than 5.4 ms on a CPU.
Keywords: Geometric modeling; Instrument tracking; Ophthalmic tool tracking; Optical coherence tomography; iOCT.