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Reproducibility of Computed Tomography Quantitative Structural Features Using the FDA Thoracic Phantom Image Database

M Budzevich

M Budzevich*, O Grove , Y Balagurunathan , Y Gu , H Wang , J Oliver , K Latifi , G Zhang , T Dilling , R Gillies , E Moros , H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, Tampa, FL


SU-E-QI-16 Sunday 3:00PM - 6:00PM Room: Exhibit Hall

Purpose: To assess the reproducibility of quantitative structural features using images from the computed tomography thoracic FDA phantom database under different scanning conditions.

Methods: Development of quantitative image features to describe lesion shape and size, beyond conventional RECIST measures, is an evolving area of research in need of benchmarking standards. Gavrielides et al. (2010) scanned a FDA-developed thoracic phantom with nodules of various Hounsfield units (HU) values, shapes and sizes close to vascular structures using several scanners and varying scanning conditions/parameters; these images are in the public domain. We tested six structural features, namely, Convexity, Perimeter, Major Axis, Minor Axis, Extent Mean and Eccentricity, to characterize lung nodules. Convexity measures lesion irregularity referenced to a convex surface. Previously, we showed it to have prognostic value in lung adenocarcinoma. The above metrics and RECIST measures were evaluated on three spiculated (8mm/-300HU, 12mm/+30HU and 15mm/+30HU) and two non-spiculated (8mm/+100HU and 10mm/+100HU) nodules (from layout 2) imaged at three different mAs values: 25, 100 and 200 mAs; on a Phillips scanner (16-slice Mx8000-IDT; 3mm slice thickness). The nodules were segmented semi-automatically using a commercial software tool; the same HU range was used for all nodules.

Results: Analysis showed convexity having the lowest maximum coefficient of variation (MCV): 1.1% and 0.6% for spiculated and non-spiculated nodules, respectively, much lower compared to RECIST Major and Minor axes whose MCV were 10.1% and 13.4% for spiculated, and 1.9% and 2.3% for non-spiculated nodules, respectively, across the various mAs. MCVs were consistently larger for speculated nodules. In general, the dependence of structural features on mAs (noise) was low.

Conclusion: The FDA phantom CT database may be used for benchmarking of structural features for various scanners and scanning conditions; we used only a small fraction of available data. Our feature convexity outperformed other structural features including RECIST measures.

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