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March 4, 2019 | Real-time simulation for ultrasound therapy

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The CEA recently developed a model of the behavior of ultrasonic waves in biological tissue. The tool will be used to design probes and treatment protocols for a new ultrasound therapy technique. It calculates the heat energy dose delivered to the areas targeted by high-intensity ultrasonic waves.

Less invasive and less harmful to patients than radiation therapy, high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) therapy can be used to treat a variety of diseases. This innovative therapy uses the energy of an ultrasonic beam to locally heat tissue to either modify or destroy it. Researchers at List, a CEA Tech institute, joined forces with scientists from INSERM’s LabTAU to develop a model of the behavior of ultrasonic waves in biological tissue. List contributed know-how in non-destructive testing of complex structures and the interaction between ultrasonic waves and biological tissue.

In research conducted in partnership with EDAP-TMS in 2018, List had previously developed a real-time local tissue heating simulation model for the treatment of prostate cancer. The software simulates the acoustical field transmitted, the associated local temperature increase, and the dose of thermal energy delivered to the tissue depending on the patient’s biological profile (morphology, tissue properties, etc.) to effectively size the lesion induced. A software module developed as a result of this research is currently being integrated into the Focal One® system sold by EDAP-TMS.

Clinical trials will begin next year. During the trials, contrast-enhanced ultrasound images of the post-treatment lesions will be compared to the results obtained using the simulator. The next step will be to complete further software development work to enable real-time interaction with practitioners.

*List earned the prestigious Institut Carnot seal in 2006 (Institut Carnot TN@UPSaclay).

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