Imaging breast lesions using the Twente Photoacoustic Mammoscope: ongoing clinical experience

M. Heijblom, D. Piras, W. Xia, Johannes C.G. van Hespen, J.M. Klaase, F.M. van den Engh, Ton van Leeuwen, Wiendelt Steenbergen, Srirang Manohar

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Current imaging modalities are often not able to detect early stages of breast cancer with high imaging contrast. Visualizing malignancy-associated increased hemoglobin concentrations might improve breast cancer diagnosis. Photoacoustic imaging can visualize hemoglobin in tissue with optical contrast and ultrasound resolution, which makes it potentially ideal for breast imaging. The Twente Photoacoustic Mammoscope (PAM) has been designed specifically for this purpose. Based on a successful pilot study in 2007, a large clinical study using PAM has been started in December 2010. PAM uses a pulsed Q-switched Nd:YAG laser at 1064 nm to illuminate a region of interest on the breast. Photoacoustic signals are detected with a 1MHz, unfocused ultrasound detector array. Three dimensional data are reconstructed using an acoustic backprojection algorithm. Those reconstructed images are compared with conventional imaging and histopathology. In the first phase of the study, the goal was to optimize the visualization of malignancies. We performed sixteen technically acceptable measurements on confined breast malignancies. In the reconstructed volumes of all malignancies, a confined high contrast region could be identified at the expected lesion depth. After ten successful measurements, the illumination area was increased and the fluence was substantially decreased. This caused a further significant increase in PAM lesion contrast.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPhotons Plus Ultrasound: Imaging and Sensing 2012
Place of PublicationSan Francisco, USA
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 20 Jan 2012
EventPhotons Plus Ultrasound: Imaging and Sensing, SPIE BiOS 2012 - San Francisco, United States
Duration: 22 Jan 201224 Jan 2012

Publication series



ConferencePhotons Plus Ultrasound: Imaging and Sensing, SPIE BiOS 2012
Abbreviated titleSPIE BiOS
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Francisco


  • METIS-289364
  • IR-83166


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