Plane wave elastography: A frequency-domain ultrasound shear wave elastography approach

Reza Khodayi-Mehr, Matthew W. Urban, Michael M. Zavlanos, Wilkins Aquino

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this paper, we propose plane wave elastography (PWE), a novel ultrasound shear wave elastography (SWE) approach. Currently, commercial methods for SWE rely on directional filtering based on the prior knowledge of the wave propagation direction, to remove complicated wave patterns formed due to reflection and refraction. The result is a set of decomposed directional waves that are separately analyzed to construct shear modulus fields that are then combined through compounding. Instead, PWE relies on a rigorous representation of the wave propagation using the frequency-domain scalar wave equation to automatically select appropriate propagation directions and simultaneously reconstruct shear modulus fields. Specifically, assuming a homogeneous, isotropic, incompressible, linear-elastic medium, we represent the solution of the wave equation using a linear combination of plane waves propagating in arbitrary directions. Given this closed-form solution, we formulate the SWE problem as a nonlinear least-squares optimization problem which can be solved very efficiently. Through numerous phantom studies, we show that PWE can handle complicated waveforms without prior filtering and is competitive with state-of-the-art that requires prior filtering based on the knowledge of propagation directions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number125017
JournalPhysics in medicine and biology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jun 21 2021


  • cancer diagnosis
  • frequency-domain
  • phantom
  • plane wave
  • scalar wave equation
  • soft tissue
  • ultrasound shear wave elastography (SWE)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


Dive into the research topics of 'Plane wave elastography: A frequency-domain ultrasound shear wave elastography approach'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this