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Quantification of Clinical Feedback On Image Quality Differences Between Two CT Scanner Models

S Bache

S Bache*, X Liu , E Loyer , J Rong , UT MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX


TH-CD-207B-12 (Thursday, August 4, 2016) 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM Room: 207B

Purpose:This work sought to quantify a radiology team’s assessment of image quality differences between two CT scanner models currently in clinical use, with emphasis on noise and low-contrast detectability (LCD).

Methods:A water phantom and a Kagaku anthropomorphic body phantom were scanned on GE Discovery CT750 HD and LightSpeed VCT scanners (4 each) with identical scan parameters and reconstructed to 2.5mm/5.0mm thicknesses. Images of water phantom were analyzed at the scanner console with a built-in LCD tool that uses statistical methods to compute requisite CT-number contrast for 95% confidence in detection of a user-defined object size. LCD value was computed for 5mm, 3mm, and 1mm objects.
Analysis of standard deviation and LCD values were performed on Kagaku phantom images within liver, stomach, and spleen. LCD value was computed for 4mm, 3mm, and 1mm objects using a benchmarked MATLAB implementation of the GE scanner-console tool.

Results:Water LCD values were larger (poorer performance) for all HD scanners compared to VCT scanners. Mean scanner model difference in requisite CT-number contrast for 5mm, 3mm, and 1mm objects for 5.0mm/2.5mm images was 3.0%/3.4% (p=0.02/p=0.10), 5.3%/5.7% (0.00002/0.02), and 8.5%/8.2% (0.0004/0.002), respectively. Mean standard deviations within Kagaku phantom ROIs were greater in HD compared to VCT images, with mean differences for the liver, stomach, and spleen for 5.0mm/2.5mm of 16%/12% (p=0.04/0.10), 8%/12% (0.15/0.11), and 16%/15% (0.05/0.11), respectively. Mean LCD value difference between HD and VCT scanners over all ROIs for 4mm, 3m, and 1mm objects and 5.0mm/2.5mm was 34%/9%, 16%/8%, and 18%/10%, respectively. HD scanners outperformed VCT scanners only for the 4mm stomach object.

Conclusion:Using both water and anthropomorphic phantoms, it was shown that HD scanners are outperformed by VCT scanners with respect to noise and LCD in a consistent and in most cases statistically significant manner. The relationship between statistical and clinical significance demands further work.

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