20 April 2005 Soft tissue visualization using a highly efficient megavoltage cone beam CT imaging system
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Recent developments in two-dimensional x-ray detector technology have made volumetric Cone Beam CT (CBCT) a feasible approach for integration with conventional medical linear accelerators. The requirements of a robust image guidance system for radiation therapy include the challenging combination of soft tissue sensitivity with clinically reasonable doses. The low contrast objects may not be perceptible with MV energies due to the relatively poor signal to noise ratio (SNR) performance. We have developed an imaging system that is optimized for MV and can acquire Megavoltage CBCT images containing soft tissue contrast using a 6MV x-ray beam. This system is capable of resolving relative electron density as low as 1% with clinically acceptable radiation doses. There are many factors such as image noise, x-ray scatter, improper calibration and acquisitions that have a profound effect on the imaging performance of CBCT and in this study attempts were made to optimize these factors in order to maximize the SNR. A QC-3V phantom was used to determine the contrast to noise ratio (CNR) and f50 of a single 2-D projection. The computed f50 was 0.43 lp/mm and the CNR for a radiation dose of 0.02cGy was 43. Clinical Megavoltage CBCT images acquired with this system demonstrate that anatomical structures such as the prostate in a relatively large size patient are visible using radiation doses in range of 6 to 8cGy.
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Farhad A. Ghelmansarai, Farhad A. Ghelmansarai, Ali Bani-Hashemi, Ali Bani-Hashemi, Jean Pouliot, Jean Pouliot, Ed Calderon, Ed Calderon, Paco Hernandez, Paco Hernandez, Matthias Mitschke, Matthias Mitschke, Michelle Aubin, Michelle Aubin, Kara Bucci, Kara Bucci, } "Soft tissue visualization using a highly efficient megavoltage cone beam CT imaging system", Proc. SPIE 5745, Medical Imaging 2005: Physics of Medical Imaging, (20 April 2005); doi: 10.1117/12.602148; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.602148

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