Background: Multi-line acquisition (MLA) is a well-established method for high frame rate cardiac ultrasound imaging, which is commonly used in conjunction with delay-and-sum (DAS) beamforming. However, the frame rate improvement comes at cost of low resolution and contrast.
Methods: The block-like artifacts that occur secondary to the use of MLA can be reduced using interpolation of the data acquired from adjacent transmitted beams – a method called synthetic transmit beamforming (STB). A recently proposed novel beamforming method is termed filtered delay-multiply-and-sum (F-DMAS) , based on modified autocorrelation of the aperture data, which provides superior contrast resolution as compared to the DAS beamforming. In this study we demonstrate that a combination of the F-DMAS with the STB compensated MLA, results in superior contrast as compared to both DAS beamformed STB and DAS beamformed single line acquisition. Moreover, we propose a novel formulation for Adaptive-Lag (AL) F-DMAS that outperforms both DAS and F-DMAS in terms of contrast and lateral resolution.
Results: F-DMAS/STB and AL F-DMAS/STB outperformed DAS/SLA in terms of contrast by 8.6 and 11.7 dB, respectively, while maintaining the improved frame rate by a factor of 4. The lateral resolution was also improved.
Conclusion: We conclude, that DMAS based beamforming has a potential to improve acquisition of high-quality high frame-rate data when combined with STB compensated MLA, which may enable more precise speckle tracking echocardiography (STE) and all parameters of myocardial function derived thereof.