In current radiation therapy practice, image quality is still assessed subjectively or by utilizing physically-based metrics. Recently, a methodology for objective task-based image quality (IQ) assessment in radiation therapy was proposed by Barrett et al.1 In this work, we present a comprehensive implementation and evaluation of this new IQ assessment methodology. A modular simulation framework was designed to perform an automated, computer-simulated end-to-end radiation therapy treatment. A fully simulated framework was created that utilizes new learning-based stochastic object models (SOM) to obtain known organ boundaries, generates a set of images directly from the numerical phantoms created with the SOM, and automates the image segmentation and treatment planning steps of a radiation therapy work ow. By use of this computational framework, therapeutic operating characteristic (TOC) curves can be computed and the area under the TOC curve (AUTOC) can be employed as a figure-of-merit to guide optimization of different components of the treatment planning process. The developed computational framework is employed to optimize X-ray CT pre-treatment imaging. We demonstrate that use of the radiation therapy-based-based IQ measures lead to different imaging parameters than obtained by use of physical-based measures.
Steven R. Dolly, Mark A. Anastasio, Lifeng Yu, and Hua Li, "Task-based image quality assessment in radiation therapy: initial characterization and demonstration with CT simulation images," Proc. SPIE 10136, Medical Imaging 2017: Image Perception, Observer Performance, and Technology Assessment, 101360Y (Presented at SPIE Medical Imaging: February 13, 2017; Published: 10 March 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2254063.
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