Precise and efficient guidance of medical devices is of paramount importance for many minimally invasive procedures. These procedures include fetal interventions, tumor biopsies and treatments, central venous catheterisations and peripheral nerve blocks. Ultrasound imaging is commonly used for guidance, but it often provides insufficient contrast with which to identify soft tissue structures such as vessels, tumors, and nerves. In this study, a hybrid interventional imaging system that combines ultrasound imaging and multispectral photoacous-tic imaging for guiding minimally invasive procedures was developed and characterized. The system provides both structural information from ultrasound imaging and molecular information from multispectral photoacous-tic imaging. It uses a commercial linear-array ultrasound imaging probe as the ultrasound receiver, with a multimode optical ber embedded in a needle to deliver pulsed excitation light to tissue. Co-registration of ultrasound and photoacoustic images is achieved with the use of the same ultrasound receiver for both modalities. Using tissue ex vivo, the system successfully discriminated deep-located fat tissue from the surrounding muscle tissue. The measured photoacoustic spectrum of the fat tissue had good agreement with the lipid spectrum in literature.

© 2015 SPIE

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