Head CT: Image quality improvement of posterior fossa and radiation dose reduction with ASiR – comparative studies of CT head examinations.

Guziński M, Waszczuk Ł, Sąsiadek MJ. Head CT: Image quality improvement of posterior fossa and radiation dose reduction with ASiR – comparative studies of CT head examinations. Eur Radiol. 2016 Oct;26(10):3691-6. doi: 10.1007/s00330-015-4183-4. Epub 2016 Jan 23. PubMed PMID: 26803506; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5021717.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

To evaluate head CT protocol developed to improve visibility of the brainstem and cerebellum, lower bone-related artefacts in the posterior fossa and maintain patient radioprotection.

METHODS:

A paired comparison of head CT performed without Adaptive Statistical Iterative Reconstruction (ASiR) and a clinically indicated follow-up with 40 % ASiR was acquired in one group of 55 patients. Patients were scanned in the axial mode with different scanner settings for the brain and the posterior fossa. Objective image quality analysis was performed with signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) and contrast-to-noise ratio (CNR). Subjective image quality analysis was based on brain structure visibility and evaluation of the artefacts.

RESULTS:

We achieved 19 % reduction of total DLP and significantly better image quality of posterior fossa structures. SNR for white and grey matter in the cerebellum were 34 % to 36 % higher, respectively, CNR was improved by 142 % and subjective analyses were better for images with ASiR.

CONCLUSIONS:

When imaging parameters are set independently for the brain and the posterior fossa imaging, ASiR has a great potential to improve CT performance: image quality of the brainstem and cerebellum is improved, and radiation dose for the brain as well as total radiation dose are reduced.

KEY POINTS:

•With ASiR it is possible to lower radiation dose or improve image quality •Sequentional imaging allows setting scan parameters for brain and posterior-fossa independently •We improved visibility of brainstem structures and decreased radiation dose •Total radiation dose (DLP) was decreased by 19.

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