A Framework For 3D Ultrasound Imaging For HIFU Tissue Ablation Using OpenGL

Open Access
Fesel, Harrison
Area of Honors:
Computer Science
Bachelor of Science
Document Type:
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Mohamed Khaled Almekkawy, Thesis Supervisor
  • Dr. Jesse Louis Barlow, Honors Advisor
  • ultrasound
  • computer science
  • software
  • medicine
  • 3D imaging
  • HIFU
  • tissue ablation
  • cancer treatment
  • ultrasound therapy
  • OpenGL
  • Qt
  • medical technology
  • high-intensity focused ultrasound
  • CUDA
The field of medical imaging, specifically ultrasound imaging and therapy, relies heavily on the visualization and proper image reconstruction of ultrasound data. Tools for visualizing ultrasound data and algorithmic methods for image processing have been widely used for medical purposes. Among the vast benefits of ultrasound in medicine is tissue ablation, which is the destruction of diseased tissue cells with heat, delivered using high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU). Challenges with this process arise when having to effectively target and ablate a region of tissue under the skin. This thesis sought to utilize computer graphics to achieve a 3D model that depicts the HIFU transducer targeting tissue imaged by B-mode ultrasound. OpenGL is an extensive and low-level graphics application programming interface (API) that was used to achieve this model rendering. The toolkit Qt was used to build a graphical user interface that incorporates Qt’s OpenGL library. The application modeled a volume of tissue by compounding B-mode image slices. The focal point of the HIFU beam—the point of highest intensity—was visualized in the model and could be adjusted to choose the site for tissue ablation. Wave propagation was studied, and the finite difference method was considered as a means to solve the acoustic wave equation to incorporate ultrasound wave visualization within the rendered scene in the future. The program has the potential to be scaled to incorporate Computed Unified Device Architecture (CUDA), NVIDIA’s graphics processor programming toolkit, which would provide sufficient processing power and parallelization to render the 3D models in real-time. The programming work expanded upon current research with the goal of increasing the accuracy of ultrasound therapy and cancer treatment. This honors thesis explores new methods for accomplishing 3D ultrasound imaging and a means of enhanced in vivo visualization for effective HIFU tissue ablation.