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Search results for: coherence enhancement

1 Scatterer Density in Edge and Coherence Enhancing Nonlinear Anisotropic Diffusion for Medical Ultrasound Speckle Reduction

Authors: Ahmed Badawi, J. Michael Johnson, Mohamed Mahfouz

Abstract:

This paper proposes new enhancement models to the methods of nonlinear anisotropic diffusion to greatly reduce speckle and preserve image features in medical ultrasound images. By incorporating local physical characteristics of the image, in this case scatterer density, in addition to the gradient, into existing tensorbased image diffusion methods, we were able to greatly improve the performance of the existing filtering methods, namely edge enhancing (EE) and coherence enhancing (CE) diffusion. The new enhancement methods were tested using various ultrasound images, including phantom and some clinical images, to determine the amount of speckle reduction, edge, and coherence enhancements. Scatterer density weighted nonlinear anisotropic diffusion (SDWNAD) for ultrasound images consistently outperformed its traditional tensor-based counterparts that use gradient only to weight the diffusivity function. SDWNAD is shown to greatly reduce speckle noise while preserving image features as edges, orientation coherence, and scatterer density. SDWNAD superior performances over nonlinear coherent diffusion (NCD), speckle reducing anisotropic diffusion (SRAD), adaptive weighted median filter (AWMF), wavelet shrinkage (WS), and wavelet shrinkage with contrast enhancement (WSCE), make these methods ideal preprocessing steps for automatic segmentation in ultrasound imaging.

Keywords: Nonlinear anisotropic diffusion, ultrasound imaging, speckle reduction, scatterer density estimation, edge based enhancement, coherence enhancement.

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