[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Accurate assessment of air density used to quantitatively characterize amount and distribution of emphysema in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) subjects has remained challenging. Hounsfield units (HU) within tracheal air can be considerably less negative than -1000 HU. This study has sought to characterize the effects of improved scatter correction used in dual-source pulmonary computed tomography (CT).
Dual-source dual-energy (DSDE) and single-source (SS) scans taken at multiple energy levels and scan settings were acquired for quantitative comparison using anesthetized ovine (n = 6), swine (n = 13), and a lung phantom. Data were evaluated for the lung, inferior vena cava, and tracheal segments. To minimize the effect of cross-scatter, the phantom scans in the DSDE mode were obtained by reducing the current of one of the tubes to near zero.
A significant shift in mean HU values in the tracheal regions of animals and the phantom is observed, with values consistently closer to -1000 HU in DSDE mode. HU values associated with SS mode demonstrated a positive shift of up to 32 HU. In vivo tracheal air measurements demonstrated considerable variability with SS scanning, whereas these values were more consistent with DSDE imaging. Scatter effects in the lung parenchyma differed from adjacent tracheal measures.
Data suggest that the scatter correction introduced into the dual-energy mode of imaging has served to provide more accurate CT lung density measures sought to quantitatively assess the presence and distribution of emphysema in COPD subjects. Data further suggest that CT images, acquired without adequate scatter correction, cannot be corrected by linear algorithms given the variability in tracheal air HU values and the independent scatter effects on lung parenchyma.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We aimed to test the hypothesis that three-dimensional (3D) volume-based scoring of computed tomography (CT) images of the paranasal sinuses was superior to Lund-Mackay CT scoring of disease severity in chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS). We determined correlation between changes in CT scores (using each scoring system) with changes in other measures of disease severity (symptoms, endoscopic scoring, and quality of life) in patients with CRS treated with triamcinolone.
The study group comprised 48 adult subjects with CRS. Baseline symptoms and quality of life were assessed. Endoscopy and CT scans were performed. Patients received a single systemic dose of intramuscular triamcinolone and were reevaluated 1 month later. Strengths of the correlations between changes in CT scores and changes in CRS signs and symptoms and quality of life were determined.
We observed some variability in degree of improvement for the different symptom, endoscopic, and quality-of-life parameters after treatment. Improvement of parameters was significantly correlated with improvement in CT disease score using both CT scoring methods. However, volumetric CT scoring had greater correlation with these parameters than Lund-Mackay scoring.
Volumetric scoring exhibited higher degree of correlation than Lund-Mackay scoring when comparing improvement in CT score with improvement in score for symptoms, endoscopic exam, and quality of life in this group of patients who received beneficial medical treatment for CRS.
International Forum of Allergy and Rhinology 09/2013; · 1.00 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Although state-of-the-art CT provides accurate sub millimeter details of the size and location of renal stones, current routine
clinical image analysis does not differentiate stone composition. This is particularly important in the case of uric acid
(UA) stones (∼10% of cases), since urinary alkalinization can be prescribed to dissolve UA stones. Therefore, simple and reliable
differentiation of UA vs. non-UA stone composition could potentially allow patients with UA stones to avoid invasive interventional
urinary procedures for stone removal or external shock wave lithotripsy. This chapter describes a novel Dual-Energy CT (DECT)
technique for renal stone differentiation, which is based on the difference in X-ray attenuation properties at high and low
kV between UA- and non-UA-containing stones. The technique has been implemented on modern Dual-Source CT scanners which allow
simultaneous Dual-Energy acquisition with high spatial resolution and immediate postprocessing using commercial algorithm
available on the system. Principles of DECT imaging, acquisition parameters and postprocessing details are discussed. Diagnostic
evaluation of three clinical cases is provided together with a summary of the results of all known validation studies performed
both in vitro and in vivo. The reported accuracy and sensitivity of the UA vs. non-UA differentiation using DECT varied from
88 to 100%. Further improvement is expected with the second generation of Dual-Source scanners due to increased spectral separation.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The objective of this study was to investigate the effect on radiation dose and image quality of the use of additional spectral filtration for dual-energy CT using dual-source CT (DSCT).
A commercial DSCT scanner was modified by adding tin filtration to the high-kV tube, and radiation output and noise were measured in water phantoms. Dose values for equivalent image noise were compared between the dual-energy mode with and without tin filtration and the single-energy mode. To evaluate dual-energy CT material discrimination, the material-specific dual-energy ratio for calcium and that for iodine were determined using images of anthropomorphic phantoms. Data were additionally acquired from imaging a 38-kg pig and an 87-kg pig, and the noise of the linearly mixed images and virtual noncontrast images was compared between dual-energy modes. Finally, abdominal dual-energy CT images of two patients of similar sizes undergoing clinically indicated CT were compared.
Adding tin filtration to the high-kV tube improved the dual-energy contrast between iodine and calcium as much as 290%. Data from our animal study showed that tin filtration had no effect on noise in the dual-energy CT mixed images but decreased noise by as much as 30% in the virtual noncontrast images. Virtual noncontrast images of patients acquired using 100 and 140 kV with added tin filtration had improved image quality relative to those generated using 80 and 140 kV without tin filtration.
Tin filtration of the high-kV tube of a DSCT scanner increases the ability of dual-energy CT to discriminate between calcium and iodine without increasing dose relative to single-energy CT. Furthermore, the use of 100- and 140-kV tube potentials allows improved dual-energy CT imaging of large patients.
American Journal of Roentgenology 11/2010; 195(5):1164-74. · 2.90 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to investigate replacing unenhanced and arterial single-energy CT acquisitions after endovascular aneurysm repair with one dual-energy CT arterial acquisition.
Thirty patients underwent arterial dual-energy CT (80 and 140 kVp) and venous single-energy CT (120 kVp) after endovascular aneurysm repair, and the radiation doses were compared with those of a standard triple-phase protocol. Both virtual unenhanced and arterial images were generated with dual-energy CT. Images were reviewed clinically for detection of endoleaks and evaluation of stent and calcium appearance. The aortic luminal attenuation on virtual unenhanced CT images was compared with that on previously acquired true unenhanced images. Virtual unenhanced, arterial, and venous images were compared for thrombus attenuation. Single-energy CT and dual-energy CT images were compared for noise.
Replacement of two (unenhanced, arterial) of three single-energy CT acquisitions with one dual-energy CT acquisition resulted in 31% radiation dose savings. All images were clinically interpretable. Thoracic (32 +/- 2 vs 35 +/- 4 HU) and abdominal (30 +/- 3 vs 35 +/- 5 HU) aortic attenuation was similar on virtual unenhanced and true unenhanced images. Thrombus attenuation was similar on virtual unenhanced (32 +/- 6 HU), arterial phase (33 +/- 7 HU), and venous phase (34 +/- 6 HU) images. Decreased stent and calcium attenuation was observed at some locations on virtual unenhanced images. Noise in the thoracic (10 +/- 1 HU) and abdominal (12 +/- 2 HU) aorta was lower on virtual unenhanced images than on true unenhanced images (13 +/- 4 HU, 19 +/- 5 HU). Noise was comparable for dual-energy and single-energy CT (thorax, 16 +/- 2 vs 13 +/- 2 HU; abdomen, 21 +/- 3 vs 23 +/- 5 HU).
Virtual unenhanced and arterial phase images derived from dual-energy CT can replace true unenhanced and arterial phase single-energy CT images in follow-up after endovascular aneurysm repair (except immediately after the procedure), providing comparable diagnostic information with substantial dose savings.
American Journal of Roentgenology 08/2010; 195(2):486-93. · 2.90 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To evaluate the detectability of urinary stones on virtual nonenhanced images generated at pyelographic-phase dual-energy computed tomography (CT).
This retrospective HIPAA-compliant study was institutional review board approved. All included patients had previously consented to the use of their medical records for research. Sixty-two patients (38 men, 24 women; age range, 35-91 years) had undergone CT urography, which consisted of nonenhanced and pyelographic-phase dual-energy CT performed by using a dual-source scanner. Commercial software was used to create virtual nonenhanced images by suppressing the iodine signal from the pyelographic-phase dual-energy CT scans. Two radiologists, in consensus, evaluated the virtual nonenhanced images for the presence of stones. Sensitivity for detecting stones was calculated on a per-stone basis. Sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy were also calculated on a per-renal unit (defined as the intrarenal collecting system and ureter of one kidney) basis. The true nonenhanced scan was considered the reference standard. A jackknife method was used because any patient may have multiple stones.
Of 62 patients with 122 renal units, 21 patients with 25 renal units had a total of 43 stones (maximal transverse diameter range, 1-24 mm; median, 3 mm). The overall sensitivity for detecting stones was 63% (27 of 43 stones) per stone. Sensitivities were 29% (four of 14 stones) for 1-2-mm stones, 64% (nine of 14 stones) for 3-4-mm stones, 83% (five of six stones) for 5-6-mm stones, and 100% (nine of nine stones) for 7-mm or larger (7, 7, 7, 8, 8, 9, 11, 15, and 24 mm) stones. All three ureteral stones (3, 4, and 8 mm) were correctly identified. The sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy for detecting stones on a per-renal unit basis were 65% (17 of 26 renal units), 92% (88 of 96 renal units), and 86% (105 of 122 renal units), respectively.
Virtual nonenhanced images generated at pyelographic-phase dual-energy CT enabled the detection of urinary stones with moderate accuracy. The detection of small (1-2-mm) stones was limited.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to optimize CT arthrography technique and determine if dual energy CT (DECT) can provide any benefit over single energy CT (SECT). Iodinated contrast attenuation at different concentrations was measured using DECT and SECT at different beam energies (140, 120, and 80 kVp). Dose and noise were measured on phantoms at different tube currents. Three bovine femoral condyles with artificially created cartilage defects were scanned with dose-equivalent protocols. Contrast-to-noise ratio (CNR) between cartilage and iodine was measured, and the appearance of cartilage defects was graded by two readers. DECT scans were post-processed for iodine quantification. The beam energy 80 kVp had the highest iodine signal, 50% greater than DECT, 75% greater than 120 kVp, and 100% greater than 140 kVp. Noise was nearly identical for all techniques when dose was matched. The 80 kVp level had the highest CNR, 25% higher than 120 kVp and DECT, and 33% greater than 140 kVp. The 80 kVp technique was also preferred by both readers. DECT iodine quantification was significantly limited by the post-processing application, noise, and beam hardening. In this in-vitro study, the SECT 80 kVp CT arthrography technique was superior to currently performed 120 and 140 kVP SECT techniques and DECT.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To determine the constancy of z-axis spatial resolution, CT number, image noise, and the potential for image artifacts for nonconstant velocity spiral CT data reconstructed using a flexibly weighted 3D filtered backprojection (WFBP) reconstruction algorithm.
A WFBP reconstruction algorithm was used to reconstruct stationary (axial, pitch=0), constant velocity spiral (pitch = 0.35-1.5) and nonconstant velocity spiral CT data acquired using a 128 x 0.6 mm acquisition mode (38.4 mm total detector length, z-flying focal spot technique), and a gantry rotation time of 0.30 s. Nonconstant velocity scans used the system's periodic spiral mode, where the table moved in and out of the gantry in a cyclical manner. For all scan types, the volume CTDI was 10 mGy. Measurements of CT number, image noise, and the slice sensitivity profile were made for all scan types as a function of the nominal slice width, table velocity, and position within the scan field of view. A thorax phantom was scanned using all modes and reconstructed transverse and coronal plane images were compared.
Negligible differences in slice thickness, CT number, noise, or artifacts were found between scan modes for data taken at two positions within the scan field of view. For nominal slices of 1.0-3.0 mm, FWHM values of the slice sensitivity profiles were essentially independent of the scan type. For periodic spiral scans, FWHM values measured at the center of the scan range were indistinguishable from those taken 5 mm from one end of the scan range. All CT numbers were within +/- 5 HU, and CT number and noise values were similar for all scan modes assessed. A slight increase in noise and artifact level was observed 5 mm from the start of the scan on the first pass of the periodic spiral. On subsequent passes, noise and artifact level in the transverse and coronal plane images were the same for all scan modes.
Nonconstant velocity periodic spiral scans can achieve z-axis spatial resolution, CT number accuracy, image noise and artifact level equivalent to those for stationary (axial), and constant velocity spiral scans. Thus, periodic spiral scans are expected to allow assessment of four-dimensional CT data for scan lengths greater than the detector width without sacrificing image quality.
Medical Physics 02/2010; 37(2):897-906. · 2.91 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To compare coronary image quality at temporal resolutions associated with dual-source computed tomography (DSCT; 83 milliseconds) and 64-detector row scanning (165 milliseconds).
In 30 patients with a heart rate of less than 70 beats per minute, DSCT coronary angiograms were reconstructed at 83- and 165-millisecond temporal resolutions over different cardiac phases. A blinded observer graded coronary quality.
The typical DSCT temporal resolution (83 milliseconds) showed a significantly greater quality at end-systole for all coronary vessels and at end-diastole for the right coronary and left anterior descending coronary arteries. For all vessels, the end-diastole produced the highest quality for both temporal resolutions.
Imaging at 83 milliseconds creates superior quality at end-systole for all coronary vessels and at end-diastole for the right coronary and left anterior descending coronary arteries. At low heart rates, end-diastole produces the highest quality at both temporal resolutions.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to determine the cardiac phase having the highest coronary sharpness for low and high heart
rate patients scanned with dual source CT (DSCT) and to compare coronary image sharpness over different cardiac phases. DSCT
coronary CT scans for 30 low heart rate (≤70beats per minute- bpm) and 30 high heart rate (>70bpm) patients were reconstructed
into different cardiac phases, starting at 30% and increasing at 5% increments until 70%. A blinded observer graded image
sharpness per coronary segment, from which sharpness scores were produced for the right (RCA), left main (LM), left anterior
descending (LAD), and circumflex (Cx) coronary arteries. For each coronary artery, the phase with maximal image sharpness
was identified with repeated measures analysis of variance. Comparison of coronary sharpness between low and high heart rate
patients was made using generalized estimating equations. For low heart rates the highest sharpness scores for all four vessels
(RCA, LM, LAD, and Cx) were at the 65 or 70% phase, which are end-diastolic cardiac phases. For high heart rates the highest
sharpness scores were between the 35 and 45% phases, which are end-systolic phases. Low heart rate patients had higher coronary
sharpness at most cardiac phases; however, patients with high heart rates had higher coronary sharpness in the 45% phase for
all four vessels (P<0.0001). Using DSCT scanning, optimal image sharpness is obtained in end-diastole at low heart rates and in end-systole
in high heart rates.
The International Journal of Cardiovascular Imaging 12/2009; 25(8):837-845. · 2.65 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aims of this study were to estimate the dose to radiosensitive organs (glandular breast and lung) in patients of various sizes undergoing routine chest CT examinations with and without tube current modulation; to quantify the effect of tube current modulation on organ dose; and to investigate the relation between patient size and organ dose to breast and lung resulting from chest CT examinations.
Thirty voxelized models generated from images of patients were extended to include lung contours and were used to represent a cohort of women of various sizes. Monte Carlo simulation-based virtual MDCT scanners had been used in a previous study to estimate breast dose from simulations of a fixed-tube-current and a tube current-modulated chest CT examinations of each patient model. In this study, lung doses were estimated for each simulated examination, and the percentage organ dose reduction attributed to tube current modulation was correlated with patient size for both glandular breast and lung tissues.
The average radiation dose to lung tissue from a chest CT scan obtained with fixed tube current was 23 mGy. The use of tube current modulation reduced the lung dose an average of 16%. Reductions in organ dose (up to 56% for lung) due to tube current modulation were more substantial among smaller patients than larger. For some larger patients, use of tube current modulation for chest CT resulted in an increase in organ dose to the lung as high as 33%. For chest CT, lung dose and breast dose estimates had similar correlations with patient size. On average the two organs receive approximately the same dose effects from tube current modulation.
The dose to radiosensitive organs during fixed-tube-current and tube current-modulated chest CT can be estimated on the basis of patient size. Organ dose generally decreases with the use of tube current-modulated acquisition, but patient size can directly affect the dose reduction achieved.
American Journal of Roentgenology 11/2009; 193(5):1340-5. · 2.90 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To prospectively evaluate the accuracy of computed tomographic (CT) perfusion measurements of renal hemodynamics and function obtained by using images acquired with one-tenth the typical radiation dose and postprocessed with a highly constrained back-projection (HYPR)-local reconstruction (LR) noise-reduction technique.
This study was approved by the institutional Animal Care and Use Committee. Two consecutive CT perfusion acquisitions were performed in 10 anesthetized pigs over 180 seconds by using routine (80 kV, 160 mAs) and one-tenth (80 kV, 16 mAs) dose levels. Images obtained with each acquisition were reconstructed with identical parameters, and the one-tenth dose images were also processed with a HYPR-LR algorithm. Attenuation changes in kidneys were determined as a function of time to form time-attenuation curves (TACs). Extended gamma-variate curve-fitting was performed, and regional perfusion, glomerular filtration rate, and renal blood flow were calculated. Image quality was evaluated (in 10 pigs), and the agreement for renal perfusion and function between the routine dose and the one-tenth dose HYPR-LR images was determined (for 20 kidneys) by using statistical methods. Statistical analysis was performed by using the paired t test, linear regression, and Bland-Altman analysis.
TACs obtained with the one-tenth dose were similar to those obtained with the routine dose. Statistical analysis showed that there were no significant differences between the routine dose and the one-tenth dose acquisitions in renal perfusion and hemodynamic values and that there were slight but statistically significant differences in some values with the one-tenth dose HYPR-LR-processed acquisition. The image quality of the one-tenth dose acquisition was improved by using the HYPR-LR algorithm. Linear regression and Bland-Altman plots showed agreement between the images acquired by using the routine dose and those acquired by using the one-tenth dose with HYPR-LR processing.
A 10-fold dose reduction at renal perfusion CT imaging can be achieved in vivo, without loss of accuracy. The image quality of the one-tenth dose images could be improved to be near that of the routine dose images by using the HYPR-LR noise-reduction algorithm. Supplemental material: http://radiology.rsna.org/lookup/suppl/doi:10.1148/radiol.2531081677/-/DC1.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Hip prosthesis is one of the most common types of metal implants and can cause significant artifacts in computed tomography (CT) examinations. The purpose of this work was to develop a projection-based method for reducing metal artifacts caused by hip prostheses in multislice helical CT.
The proposed method is based on a novel concept, reformatted projection, which is formed by combining the projection data at the same view angle over the full longitudinal scan range. Detection and segmentation of the metal were performed on each reformatted projection image. Two dimensional interpolation based on Delaunay triangulation was used to fill voids left after removal of the metal in the reformatted projection. The corrected data were then reconstructed using a commercially available algorithm. The main advantage of this method is that both the detection of the metal objects and the interpolations are performed on complete reformatted projections with the entire metal region present, which is particularly useful for long hip prostheses. Twenty clinical abdominal/pelvis exams with hip prostheses were corrected and clinically evaluated.
The overall image quality and the conspicuity in some critical organs were significantly improved compared with the uncorrected images: overall quality (P = 0.0024); bladder base (P = 0.0027), and rectum (P = 0.0078). The average noise level in the bladder base was reduced from 86.7 HU to 36.2 HU. In 17 of 20 cases, the radiologists preferred either coronal (13) or axial (4) views of the corrected images.
A novel method for reducing metal artifact in multislice helical CT was developed. Initial clinical results showed that the proposed method can effectively reduce the artifacts caused by metal implants for the cases of unilateral and bilateral hip prothesis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In principle, dual-energy CT can only accurately decompose a mixture into two materials. To decompose a mixture into three constitute materials using dual-energy CT measurements, a third criteria must be provided to solve for three unknowns with only two spectral measurements. One solution is to assume that the sum of the volumes of three constituent materials is equivalent to the volume of the mixture (i.e., volume conservation), but this is not always true. A more generalized solution is to use the principle of mass conservation, which assumes that the sum of the masses of the three constituent materials is equivalent to the mass of the mixture. In this article, a mass-conservation based, three-material decomposition dual-energy CT algorithm is described and experimental validation of the accuracy of the technique presented. The results demonstrate that the proposed method can accurately measure elemental concentrations under low noise imaging conditions. Clinically, this may be applied to measure the mass fraction of any chemical element in a three-material mixture of solutions without the requirement of volume conservation.
Medical Physics 06/2009; 36(5):1602-9. · 2.91 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to present a method for generating x-ray source models for performing Monte Carlo (MC) radiation dosimetry simulations of multidetector row CT (MDCT) scanners. These so-called “equivalent” source models consist of an energy spectrum and filtration description that are generated based wholly on the measured values and can be used in place of proprietary manufacturer’s data for scanner-specific MDCT MC simulations. Required measurements include the half value layers (HVL1 and HVL2) and the bowtie profile (exposure values across the fan beam) for the MDCT scanner of interest. Using these measured values, a method was described (a) to numerically construct a spectrum with the calculated HVLs approximately equal to those measured (equivalent spectrum) and then (b) to determine a filtration scheme (equivalent filter) that attenuates the equivalent spectrum in a similar fashion as the actual filtration attenuates the actual x-ray beam, as measured by the bowtie profile measurements. Using this method, two types of equivalent source models were generated: One using a spectrum based on both HVL1 and HVL2 measurements and its corresponding filtration scheme and the second consisting of a spectrum based only on the measured HVL1 and its corresponding filtration scheme. Finally, a third type of source model was built based on the spectrum and filtration data provided by the scanner’s manufacturer. MC simulations using each of these three source model types were evaluated by comparing the accuracy of multiple CT dose index (CTDI) simulations to measured CTDI values for 64-slice scanners from the four major MDCT manufacturers. Comprehensive evaluations were carried out for each scanner using each kVp and bowtie filter combination available. CTDI experiments were performed for both head (16 cm in diameter) and body (32 cm in diameter) CTDI phantoms using both central and peripheral measurement positions. Both equivalent source model types result in simulations with an average root mean square (RMS) error between the measured and simulated values of approximately 5% across all scanner and bowtie filter combinations, all kVps, both phantom sizes, and both measurement positions, while data provided from the manufacturers gave an average RMS error of approximately 12% pooled across all conditions. While there was no statistically significant difference between the two types of equivalent source models, both of these model types were shown to be statistically significantly different from the source model based on manufacturer’s data. These results demonstrate that an equivalent source model based only on measured values can be used in place of manufacturer’s data for Monte Carlo simulations for MDCT dosimetry.
Medical Physics 05/2009; 36(6):2154-2164. · 2.91 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The use of additional spectral filtration for dual-energy (DE) imaging using a dual-source CT (DSCT) system was investigated and its effect on the material-specific DE(ratio) was evaluated for several clinically relevant materials. The x-ray spectra, data acquisition, and reconstruction processes for a DSCT system (Siemens Definition) were simulated using information provided by the system manufacturer, resulting in virtual DE images. The factory-installed filtration for the 80 kV spectrum was left unchanged to avoid any further reductions in tube output, and only the filtration for the high-energy spectrum was modified. Only practical single-element filter materials within the atomic number range of 40 < or = Z < or = 83 were evaluated, with the aim of maximizing the separation between the two spectra, while maintaining similar noise levels for high- and low-energy images acquired at the same tube current. The differences between mean energies and the ratio of the 140 and 80 kV detector signals, each integrated below 80 keV, were evaluated. The simulations were performed for three attenuation scenarios: Head, body, and large body. The large body scenario was evaluated for the DE acquisition mode using the 100 and 140 kV spectra. The DE(ratio) for calcium hydroxyapatite (simulating bone or calcifications), iodine, and iron were determined for CT images simulated using the modified and factory-installed filtration. Several filter materials were found to perform well at proper thicknesses, with tin being a good practical choice. When image noise was matched between the low- and high-energy images, the spectral difference in mean absorbed energy using tin was increased from 25.7 to 42.7 keV (head), from 28.6 to 44.1 keV (body), and from 20.2 to 30.2 keV (large body). The overlap of the signal spectra for energies below 80 keV was reduced from 78% to 31% (head), from 93% to 27% (body), and from 106% to 79% (large body). The DE(ratio) for the body attenuation scenario increased from 1.45 to 1.91 (calcium), from 1.84 to 3.39 (iodine), and from 1.73 to 2.93 (iron) with the additional tin filtration compared to the factory filtration. This use of additional filtration for one of the x-ray tubes used in dual-source DECT dramatically increased the difference between material-specific DE ratios, e.g., from 0.39 to 1.48 for calcium and iodine or from 0.28 to 1.02 for calcium and iron. Because the ability to discriminate between different materials in DE imaging depends primarily on the differences in DE ratios, this increase is expected to improve the performance of any material-specific DECT imaging task. Furthermore, for the large patient size and in conjunction with a 100/140 kV acquisition, the use of additional filtration decreased noise in the low-energy images and increased contrast in the DE image relative to that obtained with 80/140 kV and no additional filtration.
Medical Physics 05/2009; 36(4):1359-69. · 2.91 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The larger coverage afforded by wider z-axis beams in multidetector CT (MDCT) creates larger cone angles and greater beam divergence, which results in substantial surface dose variation for helical and contiguous axial scans. This study evaluates the variation of absorbed radiation dose in both cylindrical and anthropomorphic phantoms when performing helical or contiguous axial scans. The approach used here was to perform Monte Carlo simulations of a 64 slice MDCT. Simulations were performed with different radiation profiles (simulated beam widths) for a given collimation setting (nominal beam width) and for different pitch values and tube start angles. The magnitude of variation at the surface was evaluated under four different conditions: (a) a homogeneous CTDI phantom with different combinations of pitch and simulated beam widths, (b) a heterogeneous anthropomorphic phantom with one measured beam collimation and various pitch values, (c) a homogeneous CTDI phantom with fixed beam collimation and pitch, but with different tube start angles, and (d) pitch values that should minimize variations of surface dose-evaluated for both homogeneous and heterogeneous phantoms. For the CTDI phantom simulations, peripheral dose patterns showed variation with percent ripple as high as 65% when pitch is 1.5 and simulated beam width is equal to the nominal collimation. For the anterior surface dose on an anthropomorphic phantom, the percent ripple was as high as 40% when the pitch is 1.5 and simulated beam width is equal to the measured beam width. Low pitch values were shown to cause beam overlaps which created new peaks. Different x-ray tube start angles create shifts of the peripheral dose profiles. The start angle simulations showed that for a given table position, the surface dose could vary dramatically with minimum values that were 40% of the peak when all conditions are held constant except for the start angle. The last group of simulations showed that an "ideal" pitch value can be determined which reduces surface dose variations, but this pitch value must take into account the measured beam width. These results reveal the complexity of estimating surface dose and demonstrate a range of dose variability at surface positions for both homogeneous cylindrical and heterogeneous anthropomorphic phantoms. These findings have potential implications for small-sized dosimeter measurements in phantoms, such as with TLDs or small Farmer chambers.
Medical Physics 04/2009; 36(3):1025-38. · 2.91 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In dual-source dual-energy CT, the images reconstructed from the low- and high-energy scans (typically at 80 and 140 kV, respectively) can be mixed together to provide a single set of nonmaterial-specific images for the purpose of routine diagnostic interpretation. Different from the material-specific information that may be obtained from the dual-energy scan data, the mixed images are created with the purpose of providing the interpreting physician a single set of images that have an appearance similar to that in single-energy images acquired at the same total radiation dose. In this work, the authors used a phantom study to evaluate the image quality of linearly mixed images in comparison to single-energy CT images, assuming the same total radiation dose and taking into account the effect of patient size and the dose partitioning between the low-and high-energy scans. The authors first developed a method to optimize the quality of the linearly mixed images such that the single-energy image quality was compared to the best-case image quality of the dual-energy mixed images. Compared to 80 kV single-energy images for the same radiation dose, the iodine CNR in dual-energy mixed images was worse for smaller phantom sizes. However, similar noise and similar or improved iodine CNR relative to 120 kV images could be achieved for dual-energy mixed images using the same total radiation dose over a wide range of patient sizes (up to 45 cm lateral thorax dimension). Thus, for adult CT practices, which primarily use 120 kV scanning, the use of dual-energy CT for the purpose of material-specific imaging can also produce a set of non-material-specific images for routine diagnostic interpretation that are of similar or improved quality relative to single-energy 120 kV scans.
Medical Physics 04/2009; 36(3):1019-24. · 2.91 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Tube current modulation was designed to reduce radiation dose in CT imaging while maintaining overall image quality. This study aims to develop a method for evaluating the effects of tube current modulation (TCM) on organ dose in CT exams of actual patient anatomy. This method was validated by simulating a TCM and a fixed tube current chest CT exam on 30 voxelized patient models and estimating the radiation dose to each patient's glandular breast tissue. This new method for estimating organ dose was compared with other conventional estimates of dose reduction. Thirty detailed voxelized models of patient anatomy were created based on image data from female patients who had previously undergone clinically indicated CT scans including the chest area. As an indicator of patient size, the perimeter of the patient was measured on the image containing at least one nipple using a semi-automated technique. The breasts were contoured on each image set by a radiologist and glandular tissue was semi-automatically segmented from this region. Previously validated Monte Carlo models of two multidetector CT scanners were used, taking into account details about the source spectra, filtration, collimation and geometry of the scanner. TCM data were obtained from each patient's clinical scan and factored into the model to simulate the effects of TCM. For each patient model, two exams were simulated: a fixed tube current chest CT and a tube current modulated chest CT. X-ray photons were transported through the anatomy of the voxelized patient models, and radiation dose was tallied in the glandular breast tissue. The resulting doses from the tube current modulated simulations were compared to the results obtained from simulations performed using a fixed mA value. The average radiation dose to the glandular breast tissue from a fixed tube current scan across all patient models was 19 mGy. The average reduction in breast dose using the tube current modulated scan was 17%. Results were size dependent with smaller patients getting better dose reduction (up to 64% reduction) and larger patients getting a smaller reduction, and in some cases the dose actually increased when using tube current modulation (up to 41% increase). The results indicate that radiation dose to glandular breast tissue generally decreases with the use of tube current modulated CT acquisition, but that patient size (and in some cases patient positioning) may affect dose reduction.
Physics in Medicine and Biology 03/2009; 54(3):497-512. · 2.70 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Dual-source coronary computed tomography angiography (DS-CTA) has the potential to assess both coronary anatomy and myocardial perfusion. We studied the ability of DS-CTA to detect myocardial infarction (MI) compared to a reference standard of technetium Tc(99)m sestamibi single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT).
122 patients with suspected or known coronary artery disease (age 60 (SD 11) years, 36% females) were evaluated by both DS-CTA and SPECT. SPECT-MI size was quantitated using a threshold value of 60% of peak counts on the resting images. MI on DS-CTA was defined as transmural or subendocardial hypoenhancement (<50% of surrounding myocardium), which persisted in both diastolic and systolic reconstructions and was concordant with a coronary artery territory. The performance of DS-CTA to detect SPECT-MI was determined in a blinded, vessel-based analysis.
366 vessel territories were analysed (122 patients x3). SPECT revealed 20 vessel territories with MI (involving 17 patients). 15/20 (75%) of these vessel territories were also detected by DS-CTA. An additional seven MIs were detected by DS CTA only (considered as false positive). Thus, the sensitivity of DS-CTA for detection of SPECT-MI was 75% (95% CI 56% to 94%), specificity 98% (97% to 100%), positive predictive value 68% (49% to 88%) and negative predictive value 99% (97% to 100%). DS-CTA detected 10/11 (91%) larger MIs (involving >5% of left ventricular (LV) mass by SPECT). For the 15 concordant MIs (in both SPECT and DS-CTA) the mean difference in MI size between modalities was 0.5% (4.6%) of LV mass (95% CI -8.6% to 9.5%).
DS-CTA myocardial perfusion imaging showed moderate sensitivity and positive predictive value but high specificity and negative predictive value for detection of SPECT-MI. Most large infarcts (>5% of LV mass) were detected by DS-CTA. When MI was detected by both modalities, there was a good correlation between infarct sizes quantitated by DS-CTA vs SPECT.