Lipid deposition can be assessed with combined intravascular photoacoustic/ultrasound (IVPA/US) imaging. To date, the clinical translation of IVPA/US imaging has been stalled by a low imaging speed and catheter complexity. In this paper, we demonstrate imaging of lipid targets in swine coronary arteries in vivo, at a clinically useful frame rate of 20 s−1. We confirmed image contrast for atherosclerotic plaque in human samples ex vivo. The system is on a mobile platform and provides real-time data visualization during acquisition. We achieved an IVPA signal-to-noise ratio of 20 dB. These data show that clinical translation of IVPA is possible in principle.
- Imaging systems
- Photoacoustic imaging