We propose a new method to produce admittivity images of the breast for the diagnosis of breast cancer using electrical impedance tomography (EIT). Considering the anatomical structure of the breast, we designed an electrode configuration where current-injection and voltage-sensing electrodes are separated in such a way that internal current pathways are approximately along the tangential direction of an array of voltage-sensing electrodes. Unlike conventional EIT imaging methods where the number of injected currents is maximized to increase the total amount of measured data, current is injected only twice between two pairs of current-injection electrodes attached along the circumferential side of the breast. For each current injection, the induced voltages are measured from the front surface of the breast using as many voltage-sensing electrodes as possible. Although this electrode configuration allows us to measure induced voltages only on the front surface of the breast, they are more sensitive to an anomaly inside the breast since such an injected current tends to produce a more uniform internal current density distribution. Furthermore, the sensitivity of a measured boundary voltage between two equipotential lines on the front surface of the breast is improved since those equipotential lines are perpendicular to the primary direction of internal current streamlines. One should note that this novel data collection method is different from those of other frontal plane techniques such as the x-ray projection and T-scan imaging methods because we do not get any data on the plane that is perpendicular to the current flow. To reconstruct admittivity images using two measured voltage data sets, a new projected image reconstruction algorithm is developed. Numerical simulations demonstrate the frequency-difference EIT imaging of the breast. The results show that the new method is promising to accurately detect and localize small anomalies inside the breast.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Biomedical Engineering
- Physiology (medical)