Comparison of Low Dose Performance of Photon-Counting and Energy Integrating CT.

Authors

Rajagopal, JR; Farhadi, F; Solomon, J; Sahbaee, P; Saboury, B; Pritchard, WF; Jones, EC; Samei, E

Abstract

RATIONALE AND OBJECTIVES: The purpose of this study was to investigate the potential of photon-counting CT (PCCT) to improve quantitative image quality for low dose imaging compared to energy-integrating detector CT (EID CT). MATERIALS AND METHODS: An investigational scanner (Siemens, Germany) with PCCT and EID CT subsystems was used to compare image quality performance at four dose levels: 1.7, 2, 4, 6 mGy CTDIvol, all at or below current dose values used for conventional abdominal CT. A CT quality control phantom with a homogeneous section for noise measurements and a section with cylindrical inserts of air (-910 HU), polystyrene (50 HU), acrylic (205 HU), and Teflon (1000 HU) was imaged and characterized in terms of noise, resolution, contrast-to-noise ratio (CNR), and detectability index. A second phantom with a 30 cm diameter was also imaged containing iodine solutions ranging from 0.125 to 8 mg I/mL. CNR of the iodine vials was computed as a function of CT dose and iodine concentration. RESULTS: With resolution unaffected by dose in both PCCT and EID CT, PCCT images exhibited 22.1-24.0% improvement in noise across dose levels evaluated. This noise improvement translated into a 29-41% improvement in CNR and 20-36% improvement in detectability index. For iodine contrast, PCCT images had a higher CNR for all combinations of iodine contrast and dose evaluated. CONCLUSION: For the conditions studied, PCCT exhibited superior image quality compared to EID CT. For iodine detection, PCCT offered a notable advantage with improved CNR at all doses and iodine concentration levels.

Citation

Rajagopal, Jayasai R., Faraz Farhadi, Justin Solomon, Pooyan Sahbaee, Babak Saboury, William F. Pritchard, Elizabeth C. Jones, and Ehsan Samei. “Comparison of Low Dose Performance of Photon-Counting and Energy Integrating CT.” Acad Radiol, August 24, 2020. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.acra.2020.07.033.

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