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Crit Rev Biomed Eng. 2012;40(2):121-34.

Magnetic resonance- and ultrasound imaging-based elasticity imaging methods: a review.

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  • 1Computer Sciences and Remote Sensing Laboratory, Strasbourg University, Strasbourg, France.


Elasticity imaging methods aim at measuring the mechanical behavior of soft tissues by using medical imaging modalities, such as ultrasonography or magnetic resonance imaging. The initial motivation behind these techniques, and still the main one, is the need for new diagnostic tools based on the visualization of tissue stiffness. Recent developments have demonstrated the potential that elasticity imaging methods can offer in new fields other than direct medical diagnosis, such as the field of in vivo biomechanical characterization. After a short description of the general principles behind elasticity imaging, this review illustrates some of the most original clinical applications. The use of elastography for quantitative mechanical characterization is particularly emphasized, and original applications of these methods to several biomedical research fields are reviewed.

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