Methods: The prototype CMOS-based CBCT involves a DALSA Xineos3030 detector (99 μm pixels) with 400 μm-thick CsI scintillator and a compact 0.3 FS rotating anode x-ray source. We compare the performance of CMOS CBCT to an a- Si:H FPD scanner built on a similar gantry, but using a Varian PaxScan2530 detector with 0.137 mm pixels and a 0.5 FS stationary anode x-ray source. Experimental studies include measurements of Modulation Transfer Function (MTF) for the detectors and in 3D image reconstructions. Image quality in clinical scenarios is evaluated in scans of a cadaver ankle. Metrics of trabecular microarchitecture (BV/TV, Bone Volume/Total Volume, TbSp, Trabecular Spacing, and TbTh, trabecular thickness) are obtained in a human ulna using CMOS CBCT and a-Si:H FPD CBCT and compared to gold standard μCT.
Results: The CMOS detector achieves ~40% increase in the f20 value (frequency at which MTF reduces to 0.20) compared to the a-Si:H FPD. In the reconstruction domain, the FWHM of a 127 μm tungsten wire is also improved by ~40%. Reconstructions of a cadaveric ankle reveal enhanced modulation of trabecular structures with the CMOS detector and soft-tissue visibility that is similar to that of the a-Si:H FPD system. Correlations of the metrics of bone microarchitecture with gold-standard μCT are improved with CMOS CBCT: from 0.93 to 0.98 for BV/TV, from 0.49 to 0.74 for TbTh, and from 0.9 to 0.96 for TbSp.
Conclusion: Adoption of a CMOS detector in extremity CBCT improved spatial resolution and enhanced performance in metrics of bone microarchitecture compared to a conventional a-Si:H FPD. The results support development of clinical applications of CMOS CBCT in quantitative imaging of bone health.