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ABSTRACT: Videolaryngostroboscopy (VLS) is undoubtedly a first choice examination technique in the diagnosis of several laryngeal pathologies. However, in case of low intensity or strong a-periodicity of the vocal sound, the VLS mechanism becomes ineffective in describing subsequent phases of the vocal cycle. To overcome such limitations, a new technique, called videokymography (VKG), was developed. VKG delivers images and displays the vibratory pattern from a single line selected from the whole VLS image, at the speed of approximately 8000 line-images/s. Despite its usefulness, parameter evaluation has been mostly based on visual inspection and no quantitative analysis of videokymographic images is commercially available at this time.
This article presents the VKG-Analyser, a new tool for measuring and tracking quantitative parameters from VKG images. Specifically, the left-to-right period, amplitude and phase ratios and phase symmetry index were evaluated. The case of incomplete glottis closure, the minimum distance between folds was implemented.
A digital image processing algorithm was developed and optimised for the analysis of VKG recordings that require intensity adjustment, noise removal and robust techniques for edge detection to avoid fluctuations of the grey levels in regions far from the vocal folds. The VKG-Analyser relies on a user-friendly interface that allows for the storage and retrieval of patients’ data and optimises the image analysis, according to a set of parameters that can be manually adjusted by the user.
It was successfully tested on a set of synthetic images and applied to real VKG images, both in the case of complete and incomplete glottis closure.
The new software tool aims to provide fast, reliable and reproducible measures. When applied to a large set of data, it can define reference values for normal and pathological cases, providing a valid support for diagnosis and evaluation of surgical effectiveness.
Biomedical Signal Processing and Control 03/2012; 7. · 1.07 Impact Factor