Technology / Medical

LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK Technology

Medical 3D

LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK technology simplifies reconstruction techniques for three dimensional visual representations of two dimensional image slices such as MRI and CT stacks. LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK Technology offers many different alternate views of the original data using various 3D reconstruction techniques such as MPR, VRT, MIP, MinIP and SSD, and projection techniques supporting clipping planes, slab, scale, zoom, camera control, threshold, transparency and image processing.

Examining volumetric data improves the speed of interpretation, recognition and total exam evaluation time for physicians by providing visualization of anatomical details which are difficult to diagnose using 2D slices alone. 

Overview of LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK Technology:

  • Fast and efficient rendering methods support viewing multiple 3D volumes simultaneously
  • Easily construct 3D volumes from 2D slices of any stackable set of images such as MRI and CT
  • Easily generate Axial, Sagittal and Coronal planes from the original 2D stack
  • Provides five different volume reconstruction techniques: MPR, VRT, MIP, MinIP and SSD
  • 3D rendering is fully integrated with the LEADTOOLS Medical Viewer control
  • Load and save 3D volumes
  • Load and save object mesh, status and data
  • Automated interactive 3D volume actions include:
    • Window level
    • Pan
    • Rotate volume, plane or camera
    • Move volume, plane or camera
    • Scale
    • Zoom camera
    • Magnifying glass
  • Display labels and rulers on the 3D control
  • Curved MPR / Panoramic Polygon feature for constructing curved slices and panoramic views which are ideal for dental and vessel analysis
  • Generate and view Paraxial Cuts
  • Draw up to 3 oblique and 3 orthogonal planes when rendering with MPR
  • Supports up to 6 orthogonal or oblique clipping planes
  • Specify single and double oblique planes to generate an MIP slab to render only a portion of the 3D volume
  • Customize VRT opacity
  • Apply image processing such as ISO threshold to the rendering
  • Invert the volume colors
  • Camera supports different projection views
  • Customizable Orientation Cube
  • Customize features such as the color of the boundaries, boundary box, intersection line, and background
  • Includes hardware compatibly check utility

Different 3D Volume Types in LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK

Using LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK technology, developers can create applications to generate 3D volumes using any stack of 2D cross sectional slices. The cross sectional planes must be parallel to each other in order to generate a meaningful 3D volume, so LEADTOOLS provides functions that use DICOM tags to identify, separate and sort volumetric stacks.

Also, the LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK provides an interface to define the 3D pixel volume (voxel) and patient orientation for proper measurement, orientation labeling and scaling of the 3D volume and generated oblique and orthogonal slices.

After adding cross sectional slices to the LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK engine, developers can switch between different volume types by simply setting a property to the desired volume type. The following 3D volumes types are supported by the LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK engine (click on volume type for screenshot):

3D Volume Screenshot
  • MPR (Multi Planar Reformatting): MPR is a two-dimensional reformatted image that is reconstructed secondarily in arbitrary planes from the stack of 2D image data. In LEADTOLS, this will be rendered as 3 different orthogonal plane views of the 3D volume by default. Users have the option to add up to three additional oblique planes. Additionally, there is an interaction between the position of the 2D and 3D orthogonal planes; so, scrolling in any of the 2D planes will be reflected in the corresponding 3D MPR plane and vice versa.

    MPR is regularly used for examining images of the spine to view the intervertebral discs which are difficult to see in 2D images. A 3D view makes it easier to see the position of one vertebra in relation to others.
  • VRT (Volume Rendering Technique): VRT generates a 3D volume from images of a 3D volumetric data set without explicitly extracting geometric surfaces from the data. With VRT, the optical model is used to map the data values using opacity and color. The advantage of VRT over the Shaded Surface Display (SSD) technique is that VRT uses the volumetric data as a whole and no information is discarded. The mapping of the data to opacity values acts as a classification of the data of interest which allows visualization of the interior of the volume data. LEADTOOLS also uses different 3D rendering techniques to improve the appearance of the 3D volume.

    VRT, with support for clipping planes, can be used to remove obstructive anatomy from the 3D view. Another advantage to VRT is the ability to add transparency which allows bones to be displayed as semi-transparent to transparent for better views of the otherwise concealed anatomy.
  • MIP (Maximum Intensity project): With MIP, each voxel along a view line through the volume of data is evaluated, and the maximum voxel value with maximum intensity (i.e. dense structures) is selected for rendering. This provides a better view of hyper dense structures.

    Using MIP, a developer can create an application which makes it possible for physicians to more quickly and reliably identify pulmonary nodules.
  • MinIP (Minimum Intensity Projection): MinIP is similar MIP, but only the minimum intensity along the view line of the 3D volume data is selected for rendering. This provides a better visualization of low-density structures with respect to surrounding tissues in a volume. For example, MinIP can be used for visualizing the bronchial tree since bronchi, the least dense structures of the thorax, are normally air-filled.

    The MinIP technique, which tends to enhance air spaces, can be used to create an application for allowing doctors to assess lung structure.
  • SSD (Shaded Surface Display): SSD is a technique which displays a surface model of the 3D object specified by the ISO threshold.

The LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK engine also contains properties and methods for checking the target system's 3D capabilities.

3D Projection and Camera Manipulation

The LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK camera is functionally equivalent to the human eye and creates a view of a 3D volume. With the LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK, the view of the generated 3D volume can be manipulated. Developers can control the LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK camera to zoom, pan and rotate in a 3D space, and can set the projection mode to Orthogonal or Perspective. Unwanted or obstructive anatomy can be removed from the view without removing data from the volume by setting the far and near clipping planes.

3D Object Manipulation

The LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK provides complete control over 3D object scale, rotation, pan, ISO threshold, voxel opacity and crop.

The viewer's Window Level interface provides easy 3D volume data classification by specifying an intensity range of interest using window center and window width. The change in window width (data range) changes the slope to affect the contrast. Changes to the window center alter the data inclusion from hypo dense to hyper dense structures. For better visual representation of an anatomy of interest, the LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK also provides functions to set the transfer table values using linear, exponential, logarithmic and sigmoid mapping.

Load and Save 3D Volume and Mesh

For faster 3D volume generation, the LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK includes functions to save and reload 3D volumes and 3D meshes to disk. The capability to load and save a 3D volume state including rotation, offset, threshold value, window level and slab parameters is an important time saving benefit for physicians that get interrupted while interpreting a study.

LEADTOOLS Medical 3D Control

The LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK includes an easy to use Medical 3D Control with built-in action tools. The LEADTOOLS Medical 3D Control is designed for rapid development and ease of use. With a few lines of code, the LEADTOOLS Medical 3D Control is easily integrated into the LEADTOOLS Medical Image Viewer Control, providing an advanced medical viewer with features comparable to high-end radiology workstations.

The LEADTOOLS Medical 3D Control provides the following interactive mouse action tools: 

  • Window Level – Control the brightness, contrast and transparency of the 3D object 
  • Scale 3D Object – Resize the 3D object
  • Translate 3D Object –Pan the 3D object
  • Alpha – Adjust the alpha factor of LUT curve
  • Rotate 3D Object – Rotate the 3D object
  • Rotate 3D Camera – Rotate the view of the 3D object
  • Translate 3D Camera – Pan the view of the 3D object
  • Zoom 3D Camera – Zoom the view of the 3D object
  • Translate Plane – Translates the plane in the container
  • Rotate Plane - Rotate the planes

The LEADTOOLS Medical 3D Control is also capable of generating oblique and orthogonal 2D MPR slices. Typically, an MPR view involves displaying three orthogonal plane views of a desired structure at the same time along with a method of navigating the volume. The LEADTOOLS Medical 3D Control allows each generated 2D orthogonal plane (i.e. Axial, Sagittal and Coronal) to be associated with separate LEADTOOLS Medical Image Viewer Control cells. In this configuration, the LEADTOOLS Medical Image Viewer and LEADTOOLS Medical 3D Control work together to provide interactive 3D cursor synchronization and staking from any orthogonal plane. 

Curved MPR

Curved MPR generates a 2D panoramic image and paraxial cut images from a stack of 2D slices by utilizing an advanced perspective analysis algorithm to project the curved slice onto a flat surface. This Curved MPR is popular among dental and cardiac computed tomography (CT) specialists who regularly examine anatomies with curved geometry such as teeth and blood vessels.

Curved MPR features:

  • Capability to add, delete and move the panoramic points on a curved line
  • One or more paraxial cuts can be created from each segment in the curve
  • Properties that allow to easily control the curved line information, points on curve, paraxial distance, paraxial line length, colors and more
  • Export and save generated images

The Curved MPR feature is also supported by the LEADTOOLS Medical Image Viewer Control which allows developers to seamlessly add this feature into their applications. The Medical Viewer control provides interactive tools to draw the curved line, move the panoramic points, generate the panoramic images, auto create paraxial lines and generate paraxial images. The resulting images can be used with image analysis tools such as Window/Level, Alpha, pan, zoom, scroll and measurements. It also provides the tools to perform image processing and annotations.

Curved MPR / Panoramic Screenshot

3D Volume Slab

3D volume slabs are special implementations of clipping planes and can be used from any of the six boundary box planes to “cut away” superficial structures to visualize anatomic structures and pathologic conditions within the volume. For example, one can hide the abdominal wall while investigating internal organs such as the heart or lungs. Crop Box and Crop Slab can be implemented using this feature.

The LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK provides interactive slab manipulation from 2D orthogonal MPR planes. When the 3D volume slab feature is enabled, the LEADTOOLS Medical Image Viewer Control can display slab boundaries as rectangles with dotted lines on each 2D MPR (axial, sagittal, and coronal) plane. Using the mouse, users can adjust the clipping planes by dragging the dotted line.

Single and Double Cut Plane and MIP Slab

The cut-plane feature of the LEADTOOLS Medical 3D SDK allows the user to generate a slice that results from virtually cutting through a stack of images. A double cut-plane consists of two cut-lines (Cross Section Cut Line) that are perpendicular to each other. This allows users to evaluate an anatomy of interest by looking at the perpendicular slice of an object from all directions.

Developers can programmatically set the cut line, center of rotation of the cut line, and slice thickness on any arbitrary position in the volume stack. In addition, the LEADTOOLS Medical Image Viewer Control implements interactive single and double cut lines. With the LEADTOOLS Medical Image Viewer control, users can interactively move and rotate cut lines using the built-in handles, and can select the slice thickness to view a thick MIP slab.

LEADTOOLS SDK Products that Include Medical 3D Technology

LEADTOOLS Medical Imaging SDK

Develop powerful Medical Imaging applications with the LEADTOOLS Medical Imaging SDK. Features include comprehensive full DICOM dataset support, 8-16 bit extended grayscale image support, image annotation, specialized extended grayscale image display such as window level and LUT processing, and specialized medical image processing. Other features include lossless JPEG compression, and signed and unsigned image data processing.

LEADTOOLS PACS Imaging SDK

Develop robust PACS Imaging applications with LEADTOOLS PACS Imaging. Features include Medical Web Viewer Framework, high and low level PACS SCP and SCU functions and controls, secure PACS communication, comprehensive DICOM data set support, image annotation, extended grayscale image display such as window level and LUT processing, and specialized medical image processing. Other features include lossless JPEG compression, JPIP and signed and unsigned image data processing.

LEADTOOLS Medical Imaging Suite SDK

Develop powerful PACS and Medical imaging applications with LEADTOOLS Medical Imaging Suite. Features include Medical Web Viewer Framework, Medical 3D, Zero Footprint HTML5 DICOM Viewer, DICOM Multimedia codecs, high and low level PACS SCP and SCU functions and controls, secure PACS communication, Print to PACS, comprehensive DICOM data set support, image annotation, extended grayscale image display such as window level and LUT processing, and specialized medical image processing. Other features include lossless JPEG compression, JPIP, and signed and unsigned image data processing.

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