Publication Details

Than, T. Duc., Alici, G., Harvey, S., O'Keefe, G., Zhou, H., Li, W., Cook, T. & Alam-Fotias, S. (2014). An effective localization method for robotic endoscopic capsules using multiple positron emission markers. IEEE Transactions on Robotics, 30 (5), 1174-1186.


The wireless capsule endoscope (WCE) is a first-line medical tool for the diagnosis of many gastrointestinal (GI) tract diseases such as obscure GI bleeding, Crohn's disease, small bowel tumors, and Celiac disease. Over the past few years, significant research attention has been paid to upgrading the WCE from a diagnostic-only tool to an active medical robot having not only diagnostic capabilities but therapeutic functionalities, such as biopsy, microsurgery, and targeted drug delivery, as well. One of the major limitations that impedes the development of such a robotic-type endoscope is the lack of a highly accurate localization system. In this paper, we present an experimental evaluation of a new real-time localization method (patent pending) based on tracking three positron emission markers embedded in the cover of an endoscopic capsule. Coincidence gamma rays emitted from the markers are detected by surrounding gamma ray detectors. The position and orientation information of the capsule can then be extracted by an effective tracking algorithm. The experiments were conducted in two different commercial positron emission technology (PET) scanners: Philips Allegro and Philips TF64. The experimental results show that the proposed localization method could provide less than 0.5-mm position error and 2.4° orientation error in a localization time interval of 50 ms with an average computational time of 6 ms per time interval. Zero power consumption and zero space occupation inside the capsule are additional advantages of this localization method.



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