We report on the use of elastographic imaging techniques to assess the bone/soft tissue interface, a region that has not been previously investigated but may provide important information about fracture and bone healing. The performance of axial strain elastograms and axial shear strain elastograms at the bone/soft tissue interface was studied ex vivo on intact and fractured canine and ovine tibias. Selected ex vivo results were corroborated on intact sheep tibias in vivo. The elastography results were statistically analyzed using elastographic image quality tools. The results of this study demonstrate distinct patterns in the distribution of the normalized local axial strains and axial shear strains at the bone/soft tissue interface with respect to the background soft tissue. They also show that the relative strength and distribution of the elastographic parameters change in the presence of a fracture and depend on the degree of misalignment between the fracture fragments. Thus, elastographic imaging modalities might be used in the future to obtain information regarding the integrity of bones and to assess the severity of fractures, alignment of bone fragments as well as to follow bone healing.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||20|
|Journal||Physics in Medicine and Biology|
|State||Published - Jan 7 2016|