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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/P034454/1
Title: Content Based Image Retrieval For Real-Time Registration In Image-Guided Interventions
Principal Investigator: Clarkson, Dr MJ
Other Investigators:
Researcher Co-Investigators:
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Department: Medical Physics and Biomedical Eng
Organisation: UCL
Scheme: First Grant - Revised 2009
Starts: 01 December 2017 Ends: 30 September 2019 Value (£): 99,906
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Med.Instrument.Device& Equip. Medical Imaging
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
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Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
31 May 2017 HT Investigator-led Panel Meeting - May 2017 Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
Ultrasound imaging provides important real-time information to guide surgical interventions. Intra-operative Laparoscopic UltraSound (LUS) has been widely used in hepatic surgery, and may improve the detection, characterisation and localisation of hepatic tumours. However, it can be difficult to use LUS as the surgeon is normally required to look at both the laparoscopic video on one monitor and then the UltraSound (US) images on a different monitor, while performing their duties. Furthermore it is difficult to relate live LUS images to pre-operative images such as Magnetic Resonance (MR) or Computed Tomography (CT) scans, as the ultrasound is 2 dimensional, and the MR/CT scans are mostly 3 dimensional, and both look very different to the patients anatomy.

So, various authors including ourselves have developed image-guided laparoscopic surgery systems to provide an integrated computer system to guide the surgeon, where the aim is to provide an intuitive display of all the available imaging data, in a convenient and easy to use fashion. However, while many advancements in guidance technology have been developed by the academic community over the last 20 years, only a very small proportion has transitioned to clinical use. Challenges include the lack of space, the need for sterility, the requirement for as little user-interaction as possible and the time constraints imposed by the cost of theatre time. Many research prototypes simply do not meet these criteria and fail to translate to a clinically useful product.

Typically, current methods of registering (aligning) data are often too slow or too awkward to be used in real-time. I propose a feasibility study to build a new framework for real-time registration that can be applied to applications as diverse as laparoscopic surgery, endoscopic fetal surgery, robot-assisted surgery and image-guided ablation of tumours.

The proposed method will make use of image simulation prior to surgery. The computer will simulate and store a large quantity of ultrasound images, from a variety of different positions and orientations. Then during surgery, the live ultrasound feed will be matched to the images pre-operative, simulated, database. This will enable real-time alignment of the pre-operative data, thereby providing a much easier to use system.

Key Findings
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