IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering

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A Robotically Steerable Guidewire with Forward-Viewing Ultrasound: Development of Technology for Minimally-Invasive Imaging
Inability to visualize or cross chronic total occlusions leads to high failure rates (25%) during endovascular treatment of peripheral artery disease. To address this problem, a robotically-steerable guidewire system (0.035’’-diameter) was developed with integrated forward-viewing ultrasound guidance. A custom, sub-millimeter ultrasound transducer and a synthetic aperture image formation approach were developed, allowing imaging with high resolution (0.25 mm) and sensitivity (SNR = 31 dB). Imaging performance was demonstrated in phantoms and an ex vivo artery. This robotically-steered guidewire with forward-viewing guidance can increase procedural success by navigating across chronic total occlusions that cannot currently be crossed in endovascular procedures... Read more