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Evaluation of Multi-Modality (CT/MR/PET) Image Registration Accuracy in Radiotherapy Planning

A Sethi

A Sethi*, I Rusu, M Surucu, J Halama, Loyola Univ Medical Center, Maywood, IL

SU-E-J-97 Sunday 3:00:00 PM - 6:00:00 PM Room: Exhibit Hall

Purpose: Evaluate accuracy of multi-modality image registration in radiotherapy planning process.

Methods: A water-filled anthropomorphic head phantom containing eight 'donut-shaped' fiducial markers (3 internal + 5 external) was selected for this study. Seven image sets (3CTs, 3MRs and PET) of phantom were acquired and fused in a commercial treatment planning system. First, a narrow slice (0.75mm) baseline CT scan was acquired (CT1). Subsequently, the phantom was re-scanned with a coarse slice width = 1.5mm (CT2) and after subjecting phantom to rotation/displacement (CT3). Next, the phantom was scanned in a 1.5 Tesla MR scanner and three MR image sets (axial T1, axial T2, coronal T1) were acquired at 2mm slice width. Finally, the phantom and center of fiducials were doped with 18F and a PET scan was performed with 2mm cubic voxels. All image scans (CT/MR/PET) were fused to the baseline (CT1) data using automated mutual-information based fusion algorithm. Difference between centroids of fiducial markers in various image modalities was used to assess image registration accuracy.

Results: CT/CT image registration was superior to CT/MR and CT/PET: average CT/CT fusion error was found to be 0.64 ± 0.14 mm. Corresponding values for CT/MR and CT/PET fusion were 1.33 ± 0.71mm and 1.11 ± 0.37mm. Internal markers near the center of phantom fused better than external markers placed on the phantom surface. This was particularly true for the CT/MR and CT/PET. The inferior quality of external marker fusion indicates possible distortion effects toward the edges of MR image. Peripheral targets in the PET scan may be subject to parallax error caused by depth of interaction of photons in detectors.

Conclusions: Current widespread use of multimodality imaging in radiotherapy planning calls for periodic quality assurance of image registration process. Such studies may help improve safety and accuracy in treatment planning.

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