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Title: SU-F-P-45: Clinical Experience with Radiation Dose Reduction of CT Examinations Using Iterative Reconstruction Algorithms

Abstract

Purpose: Iterative reconstruction (IR) algorithms have been adopted by medical centers in the past several years. IR has a potential to substantially reduce patient dose while maintaining or improving image quality. This study characterizes dose reductions in clinical settings for CT examinations using IR. Methods: We retrospectively analyzed dose information from patients who underwent abdomen/pelvis CT examinations with and without contrast media in multiple locations of our Healthcare system. A total of 743 patients scanned with ASIR on 64 slice GE lightspeed VCTs at three sites, and 30 patients scanned with SAFIRE on a Siemens 128 slice Definition Flash in one site was retrieved. For comparison, patient data (n=291) from a GE scanner and patient data (n=61) from two Siemens scanners where filtered back-projection (FBP) was used was collected retrospectively. 30% and 10% ASIR, and SAFIRE Level 2 was used. CTDIvol, Dose-length-product (DLP), weight and height from all patients was recorded. Body mass index (BMI) was calculated accordingly. To convert CTDIvol to SSDE, AP and lateral dimensions at the mid-liver level was measured for each patient. Results: Compared with FBP, 30% ASIR reduces dose by 44.1% (SSDE: 12.19mGy vs. 21.83mGy), while 10% ASIR reduced dose by 20.6% (SSDE 17.32mGy vs.more » 21.83). Use of SAFIRE reduced dose by 61.4% (SSDE: 8.77mGy vs. 22.7mGy). The geometric mean for patients scanned with ASIR was larger than for patients scanned with FBP (geometric mean is 297.48 mmm vs. 284.76 mm). The same trend was observed for the Siemens scanner where SAFIRE was used (geometric mean: 316 mm with SAFIRE vs. 239 mm with FBP). Patient size differences suggest that further dose reduction is possible. Conclusion: Our data confirmed that in clinical practice IR can significantly reduce dose to patients who undergo CT examinations, while meeting diagnostic requirements for image quality.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [2]
  1. Baylor Scott and White Healthcare System, Dallas, TX (United States)
  2. University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22626715
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Medical Physics; Journal Volume: 43; Journal Issue: 6; Other Information: (c) 2016 American Association of Physicists in Medicine; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
60 APPLIED LIFE SCIENCES; 61 RADIATION PROTECTION AND DOSIMETRY; ABDOMEN; ALGORITHMS; COMPUTERIZED TOMOGRAPHY; CONTRAST MEDIA; IMAGES; ITERATIVE METHODS; LIVER; MEDICAL ESTABLISHMENTS; PATIENTS; PELVIS; RADIATION DOSES

Citation Formats

Weir, V, and Zhang, J. SU-F-P-45: Clinical Experience with Radiation Dose Reduction of CT Examinations Using Iterative Reconstruction Algorithms. United States: N. p., 2016. Web. doi:10.1118/1.4955752.
Weir, V, & Zhang, J. SU-F-P-45: Clinical Experience with Radiation Dose Reduction of CT Examinations Using Iterative Reconstruction Algorithms. United States. doi:10.1118/1.4955752.
Weir, V, and Zhang, J. 2016. "SU-F-P-45: Clinical Experience with Radiation Dose Reduction of CT Examinations Using Iterative Reconstruction Algorithms". United States. doi:10.1118/1.4955752.
@article{osti_22626715,
title = {SU-F-P-45: Clinical Experience with Radiation Dose Reduction of CT Examinations Using Iterative Reconstruction Algorithms},
author = {Weir, V and Zhang, J},
abstractNote = {Purpose: Iterative reconstruction (IR) algorithms have been adopted by medical centers in the past several years. IR has a potential to substantially reduce patient dose while maintaining or improving image quality. This study characterizes dose reductions in clinical settings for CT examinations using IR. Methods: We retrospectively analyzed dose information from patients who underwent abdomen/pelvis CT examinations with and without contrast media in multiple locations of our Healthcare system. A total of 743 patients scanned with ASIR on 64 slice GE lightspeed VCTs at three sites, and 30 patients scanned with SAFIRE on a Siemens 128 slice Definition Flash in one site was retrieved. For comparison, patient data (n=291) from a GE scanner and patient data (n=61) from two Siemens scanners where filtered back-projection (FBP) was used was collected retrospectively. 30% and 10% ASIR, and SAFIRE Level 2 was used. CTDIvol, Dose-length-product (DLP), weight and height from all patients was recorded. Body mass index (BMI) was calculated accordingly. To convert CTDIvol to SSDE, AP and lateral dimensions at the mid-liver level was measured for each patient. Results: Compared with FBP, 30% ASIR reduces dose by 44.1% (SSDE: 12.19mGy vs. 21.83mGy), while 10% ASIR reduced dose by 20.6% (SSDE 17.32mGy vs. 21.83). Use of SAFIRE reduced dose by 61.4% (SSDE: 8.77mGy vs. 22.7mGy). The geometric mean for patients scanned with ASIR was larger than for patients scanned with FBP (geometric mean is 297.48 mmm vs. 284.76 mm). The same trend was observed for the Siemens scanner where SAFIRE was used (geometric mean: 316 mm with SAFIRE vs. 239 mm with FBP). Patient size differences suggest that further dose reduction is possible. Conclusion: Our data confirmed that in clinical practice IR can significantly reduce dose to patients who undergo CT examinations, while meeting diagnostic requirements for image quality.},
doi = {10.1118/1.4955752},
journal = {Medical Physics},
number = 6,
volume = 43,
place = {United States},
year = 2016,
month = 6
}
  • Purpose: Compressed sensing (CS)-based iterative reconstruction (IR) techniques are able to reconstruct cone-beam CT (CBCT) images from undersampled noisy data, allowing for imaging dose reduction. However, there are a few practical concerns preventing the clinical implementation of these techniques. On the image quality side, data truncation along the superior–inferior direction under the cone-beam geometry produces severe cone artifacts in the reconstructed images. Ring artifacts are also seen in the half-fan scan mode. On the reconstruction efficiency side, the long computation time hinders clinical use in image-guided radiation therapy (IGRT). Methods: Image quality improvement methods are proposed to mitigate the conemore » and ring image artifacts in IR. The basic idea is to use weighting factors in the IR data fidelity term to improve projection data consistency with the reconstructed volume. In order to improve the computational efficiency, a multiple graphics processing units (GPUs)-based CS-IR system was developed. The parallelization scheme, detailed analyses of computation time at each step, their relationship with image resolution, and the acceleration factors were studied. The whole system was evaluated in various phantom and patient cases. Results: Ring artifacts can be mitigated by properly designing a weighting factor as a function of the spatial location on the detector. As for the cone artifact, without applying a correction method, it contaminated 13 out of 80 slices in a head-neck case (full-fan). Contamination was even more severe in a pelvis case under half-fan mode, where 36 out of 80 slices were affected, leading to poorer soft tissue delineation and reduced superior–inferior coverage. The proposed method effectively corrects those contaminated slices with mean intensity differences compared to FDK results decreasing from ∼497 and ∼293 HU to ∼39 and ∼27 HU for the full-fan and half-fan cases, respectively. In terms of efficiency boost, an overall 3.1 × speedup factor has been achieved with four GPU cards compared to a single GPU-based reconstruction. The total computation time is ∼30 s for typical clinical cases. Conclusions: The authors have developed a low-dose CBCT IR system for IGRT. By incorporating data consistency-based weighting factors in the IR model, cone/ring artifacts can be mitigated. A boost in computational efficiency is achieved by multi-GPU implementation.« less
  • Purpose: Iterative reconstruction (IR) algorithms are developed to improve CT image quality (IQ) by reducing noise without diminishing spatial resolution or contrast. For CT in radiation therapy (RT), slightly increasing imaging dose to improve IQ may be justified if it can substantially enhance structure delineation. The purpose of this study is to investigate and to quantify the IQ enhancement as a result of increasing imaging doses and using IR algorithms. Methods: CT images were acquired for phantoms, built to evaluate IQ metrics including spatial resolution, contrast and noise, with a variety of imaging protocols using a CT scanner (Definition ASmore » Open, Siemens) installed inside a Linac room. Representative patients were scanned once the protocols were optimized. Both phantom and patient scans were reconstructed using the Sinogram Affirmed Iterative Reconstruction (SAFIRE) and the Filtered Back Projection (FBP) methods. IQ metrics of the obtained CTs were compared. Results: IR techniques are demonstrated to preserve spatial resolution as measured by the point spread function and reduce noise in comparison to traditional FBP. Driven by the reduction in noise, the contrast to noise ratio is doubled by adopting the highest SAFIRE strength. As expected, increasing imaging dose reduces noise for both SAFIRE and FBP reconstructions. The contrast to noise increases from 3 to 5 by increasing the dose by a factor of 4. Similar IQ improvement was observed on the CTs for selected patients with pancreas and prostrate cancers. Conclusion: The IR techniques produce a measurable enhancement to CT IQ by reducing the noise. Increasing imaging dose further reduces noise independent of the IR techniques. The improved CT enables more accurate delineation of tumors and/or organs at risk during RT planning and delivery guidance.« less
  • Purpose: Iterative reconstruction (IR) algorithms are developed to improve CT image quality (IQ) by reducing noise without diminishing spatial resolution or contrast. The CT IQ for patients with a high Body Mass Index (BMI) can suffer from increased noise due to photon starvation. The purpose of this study is to investigate and to quantify the IQ enhancement for high BMI patients through the application of IR algorithms. Methods: CT raw data collected for 6 radiotherapy (RT) patients with BMI, greater than or equal to 30 were retrospectively analyzed. All CT data were acquired using a CT scanner (Somaton Definition ASmore » Open, Siemens) installed in a linac room (CT-on-rails) using standard imaging protocols. The CT data were reconstructed using the Sinogram Affirmed Iterative Reconstruction (SAFIRE) and Filtered Back Projection (FBP) methods. IQ metrics of the obtained CTs were compared and correlated with patient depth and BMI. The patient depth was defined as the largest distance from anterior to posterior along the bilateral symmetry axis. Results: IR techniques are demonstrated to preserve contrast and reduce noise in comparison to traditional FBP. Driven by the reduction in noise, the contrast to noise ratio is roughly doubled by adopting the highest SAFIRE strength. A significant correlation was observed between patient depth and IR noise reduction through Pearson’s correlation test (R = 0.9429/P = 0.0167). The mean patient depth was 30.4 cm and the average relative noise reduction for the strongest iterative reconstruction was 55%. Conclusion: The IR techniques produce a measureable enhancement to CT IQ by reducing the noise. Dramatic noise reduction is evident for the high BMI patients. The improved CT IQ enables more accurate delineation of tumors and organs at risk and more accuarte dose calculations for RT planning and delivery guidance. Supported by Siemens.« less
  • Purpose: A Fourier-based iterative reconstruction technique, termed Equally Sloped Tomography (EST), is developed in conjunction with advanced mathematical regularization to investigate radiation dose reduction in x-ray CT. The method is experimentally implemented on fan-beam CT and evaluated as a function of imaging dose on a series of image quality phantoms and anonymous pediatric patient data sets. Numerical simulation experiments are also performed to explore the extension of EST to helical cone-beam geometry. Methods: EST is a Fourier based iterative algorithm, which iterates back and forth between real and Fourier space utilizing the algebraically exact pseudopolar fast Fourier transform (PPFFT). Inmore » each iteration, physical constraints and mathematical regularization are applied in real space, while the measured data are enforced in Fourier space. The algorithm is automatically terminated when a proposed termination criterion is met. Experimentally, fan-beam projections were acquired by the Siemens z-flying focal spot technology, and subsequently interleaved and rebinned to a pseudopolar grid. Image quality phantoms were scanned at systematically varied mAs settings, reconstructed by EST and conventional reconstruction methods such as filtered back projection (FBP), and quantified using metrics including resolution, signal-to-noise ratios (SNRs), and contrast-to-noise ratios (CNRs). Pediatric data sets were reconstructed at their original acquisition settings and additionally simulated to lower dose settings for comparison and evaluation of the potential for radiation dose reduction. Numerical experiments were conducted to quantify EST and other iterative methods in terms of image quality and computation time. The extension of EST to helical cone-beam CT was implemented by using the advanced single-slice rebinning (ASSR) method. Results: Based on the phantom and pediatric patient fan-beam CT data, it is demonstrated that EST reconstructions with the lowest scanner flux setting of 39 mAs produce comparable image quality, resolution, and contrast relative to FBP with the 140 mAs flux setting. Compared to the algebraic reconstruction technique and the expectation maximization statistical reconstruction algorithm, a significant reduction in computation time is achieved with EST. Finally, numerical experiments on helical cone-beam CT data suggest that the combination of EST and ASSR produces reconstructions with higher image quality and lower noise than the Feldkamp Davis and Kress (FDK) method and the conventional ASSR approach. Conclusions: A Fourier-based iterative method has been applied to the reconstruction of fan-bean CT data with reduced x-ray fluence. This method incorporates advantageous features in both real and Fourier space iterative schemes: using a fast and algebraically exact method to calculate forward projection, enforcing the measured data in Fourier space, and applying physical constraints and flexible regularization in real space. Our results suggest that EST can be utilized for radiation dose reduction in x-ray CT via the readily implementable technique of lowering mAs settings. Numerical experiments further indicate that EST requires less computation time than several other iterative algorithms and can, in principle, be extended to helical cone-beam geometry in combination with the ASSR method.« less
  • Purpose: The introduction of the highly nonlinear MBIR algorithm to clinical CT systems has made CNR an invalid metric for kV optimization. The purpose of this work was to develop a task-based framework to unify kV and mAs optimization for both FBP- and MBIR-based CT systems. Methods: The kV-mAs optimization was formulated as a constrained minimization problem: to select kV and mAs to minimize dose under the constraint of maintaining the detection performance as clinically prescribed. To experimentally solve this optimization problem, exhaustive measurements of detectability index (d’) for a hepatic lesion detection task were performed at 15 different mAmore » levels and 4 kV levels using an anthropomorphic phantom. The measured d’ values were used to generate an iso-detectability map; similarly, dose levels recorded at different kV-mAs combinations were used to generate an iso-dose map. The iso-detectability map was overlaid on top of the iso-dose map so that for a prescribed detectability level d’, the optimal kV-mA can be determined from the crossing between the d’ contour and the dose contour that corresponds to the minimum dose. Results: Taking d’=16 as an example: the kV-mAs combinations on the measured iso-d’ line of MBIR are 80–150 (3.8), 100–140 (6.6), 120–150 (11.3), and 140–160 (17.2), where values in the parentheses are measured dose values. As a Result, the optimal kV was 80 and optimal mA was 150. In comparison, the optimal kV and mA for FBP were 100 and 500, which corresponded to a dose level of 24 mGy. Results of in vivo animal experiments were consistent with the phantom results. Conclusion: A new method to optimize kV and mAs selection has been developed. This method is applicable to both linear and nonlinear CT systems such as those using MBIR. Additional dose savings can be achieved by combining MBIR with this method. This work was partially supported by an NIH grant R01CA169331 and GE Healthcare. K. Li, D. Gomez-Cardona, M. G. Lubner: Nothing to disclose. P. J. Pickhardt: Co-founder, VirtuoCTC, LLC Stockholder, Cellectar Biosciences, Inc. G.-H. Chen: Research funded, GE Healthcare; Research funded, Siemens AX.« less