Visualization of subcutaneous insulin injections by x-ray computed tomography

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


We report how the three-dimensional structure of subcutaneous injections of soluble insulin can be visualized by x-ray computed tomography using an iodine based contrast agent. The injections investigated are performed ex vivo in porcine adipose tissue. Full tomography scans carried out at a laboratory x-ray source with a total acquisition time of about 1 min yield CT-images with an effective pixel size of 109 x 109 mu m(2). The depots are segmented using a modified Chan-Vese algorithm and we are able to observe differences in the shape of the injection depot and the position of the depot in the skin among equally performed injections. To overcome the beam hardening artefacts, which affect the quantitative prediction of the volume injected, we additionally present results concerning the visualization of two injections using synchrotron radiation. The spatial concentration distribution of iodine is calculated to show the dilution of the insulin drug inside the depot. Characterisation of the shape of the depot and the spatial concentration profile of the injected fluid is important knowledge when improving the clinical formulation of an insulin drug, the performance of injection devices and when predicting the effect of the drug through biomedical simulations.


  • M. Thomsen
  • M. Poulsen
  • Martin Bech
  • A. Velroyen
  • J. Herzen
  • F. Beckmann
  • R. Feidenhans'l
  • F. Pfeiffer
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Radiology, Nuclear Medicine and Medical Imaging
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7191-7203
JournalPhysics in Medicine and Biology
Issue number21
Publication statusPublished - 2012
Publication categoryResearch