As the global burden of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease continues to rise,
there is an increased demand for improved imaging techniques for earlier detection
and diagnosis of atherosclerotic plaques. Vulnerable plaque lesions are thought to
be responsible for the majority of cardiovascular events, characterized by a large
lipid core, a thin fibrous cap, and neovascularization; features that increase the
risk of plaque rupture and thrombosis. Intraplaque neovascularization (IPN) in advanced
lesions of the carotid artery can be visualized using contrast enhanced ultrasound.
Plaques can be qualitatively scored by locating microbubble flow within the plaque
(0, not visible; 1, peri-adventitial; and 2, within plaque core). IPN quantitative
methods may provide a more powerful tool for the detection of vulnerable plaque. The
purpose of this study was to develop a carotid phantom model containing neovascularized
atherosclerotic plaque mimics, resembling human plaques, to assess IPN quantitative
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© 2020 Published by Elsevier Inc.