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Assessing Radiation Dose Reduction and CT Image Optimization Through the Measurement and Analysis of the Detector Quantum Efficiency (DQE) of CT Images Using Different Beam Hardening Filters

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J Collier

J Collier*, S Aldoohan , K Gill ,


SU-E-I-62 Sunday 3:00PM - 6:00PM Room: Exhibit Hall

Purpose: Reducing patient dose while maintaining (or even improving) image quality is one of the foremost goals in CT imaging. To this end, we consider the feasibility of optimizing CT scan protocols in conjunction with the application of different beam-hardening filtrations and assess this augmentation through noise-power spectrum (NPS) and detector quantum efficiency (DQE) analysis.

Methods: American College of Radiology (ACR) and Catphan phantoms (The Phantom Laboratory) were scanned with a 64 slice CT scanner when additional filtration of thickness and composition (e.g., copper, nickel, tantalum, titanium, and tungsten) had been applied. A MATLAB-based code was employed to calculate the image of noise NPS. The Catphan Image Owl software suite was then used to compute the modulated transfer function (MTF) responses of the scanner. The DQE for each additional filter, including the inherent filtration, was then computed from these values. Finally, CT dose index (CTDIvol) values were obtained for each applied filtration through the use of a 100 mm pencil ionization chamber and CT dose phantom.

Results: NPS, MTF, and DQE values were computed for each applied filtration and compared to the reference case of inherent beam-hardening filtration only. Results showed that the NPS values were reduced between 5 and 12% compared to inherent filtration case. Additionally, CTDIvol values were reduced between 15 and 27% depending on the composition of filtration applied. However, no noticeable changes in image contrast-to-noise ratios were noted.

Conclusion: The reduction in the quanta noise section of the NPS profile found in this phantom-based study is encouraging. The reduction in both noise and dose through the application of beam-hardening filters is reflected in our phantom image quality. However, further investigation is needed to ascertain the applicability of this approach to reducing patient dose while maintaining diagnostically acceptable image qualities in a clinical setting.

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