The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America vol:106 issue:2 pages:1126-1133
A study is presented in which the influence of the pressure amplitude of the incident pulse on the estimated frequency dependency of the attenuation coefficient is shown. First, the effect is demonstrated with a simple theoretical model for both transmission and reflection measurements. Simulations show that for both measurement techniques a high-amplitude incident pulse results in a biased estimate of the attenuation coefficient due to nonlinear interaction of the different frequency components of the incident pulse. It is shown that in transmission and reflection measurements the biases have opposite signs. The effect of bandwidth, central frequency, and phase of the incident pulse on this bias is investigated. Second, the effect is demonstrated both in vitro, using a broadband through-transmission substitution technique on a tissue mimicking gelatine phantom, and in vivo, using reflection measurements with standard clinical equipment. The experimental results agree well with the theoretical model. The relevance of this study for ultrasonic tissue characterization is shown.