Research Seminar: From Medical Imaging to Virtual Treatment Planning and Training

September 23, 2011
Location: TASC 9204
Presenter: Dr. Pierre Boulanger, Professor and iCORE/TRLabs Industrial Chair Dept. of Computing Science and Dept. of Radiology & Diagnostic Imaging, University of Alberta


In the past years, imaging procedures have so fundamentally changed medical practice that not only are they indispensable, it is impossible to imagine medical practice without them. Starting with the familiar X-ray, a whole host of imaging procedures has been developed.

CT, MRI/MRA, ultrasound, angiography, and nuclear medicine are the best-known examples. Most clinical cases can be diagnosed with sufficient accuracy using extant imaging procedures. The additional costs of ''better diagnosis alone'' can no longer be justified. Extra expenses will only be accepted if additional information which has been gleaned from the imaging procedure has an impact on the therapy or supports/improves the therapeutic procedure by, e.g., assisting in the training of skills, teaching, planning, documenting, and quality control. Imaging procedures are increasingly being used for navigating and for guiding intervention, controlling therapy, monitoring the course of illnesses, etc. By fusing various imaging modalities and physiological data, one can create a patient-specific model that can be used to perform patient-specific surgical planning, discuss various options with the patient, and allow the surgeon to train before the actual procedure takes place. In my presentation, I will cover various aspects of these complex technologies and their potential impact on the medical community and the health care system as a whole.

Short Biography

Dr. Boulanger worked for 18 years at the National Research Council of Canada as a senior research officer where his primary research interest was in 3D computer vision, rapid product development, and virtualized reality systems. He now has a double appointment as a professor at the University of Alberta's Department of Computing Science and at the Department of Radiology and Diagnostic Imaging. His main research topic and teaching is on virtualized reality systems. He is also principal investigator for new media at TRLabs. In 2004, Dr. Boulanger was awarded an iCORE/TRLabs industrial chair in Collaborative Virtual Environment.
He has published more than 230 scientific papers in various Journals and Conferences. He is on the editorial board of two major academic journals. Dr. Boulanger is also on many international committees and frequently gives lectures on rapid product development and virtualized reality. He is the Director of the Advanced Man Machine Interface Laboratory. He is also the scientific director of the Alberta Radiological Visualization Center. On the commercial side, Dr. Boulanger is the president of PROTEUS Consulting Inc. an Alberta-based consulting firm specialized in Virtual Reality Applications.

Site by Faculty of Applied Science web team, Simon Fraser University