Anthropomorphic phantoms can serve as anatomically structured tools for assessing clinical computed tomography (CT) imaging systems. The aim of this project is to create highly customized 3D inkjet-printed, contrast-enhanced physical liver phantoms for use in improving CT imaging system analysis. The capability of using voxelized print to create physical phantoms with texture was previously presented by our lab. Building on that technology, we show the feasibility of producing iodine enhanced liver phantoms with varying textures, at resolutions higher than clinical CT using inkjetprinting. We use a desktop inkjet-printer, with custom inks to print these paper phantoms. Sodium bromide (NaBr) ink is used to represent unenhanced tissue, and potassium iodide (KI) represents contrast-enhanced tissue. We have shown the feasibility of using 3D inkjet-printing to create unique, contrast-enhanced liver phantoms for use in CT. In the future, we plan to expand our methods and tools to create tissue-equivalent physical phantoms for other anatomical structures in the abdominal region.
Anthropomorphic breast phantoms mimic patient anatomy in order to evaluate clinical mammography and digital breast tomosynthesis system performance. Our goal is to create a modular phantom with an anthropomorphic region to allow for improved lesion and calcification detection as well as a uniform region to evaluate standard quality control (QC) metrics. Previous versions of this phantom used commercial photopolymer inkjet three-dimensional printers to recreate breast anatomy using four surfaces that were fabricated with commercial materials spanning only a limited breast density range of 36% to 64%. We use modified printers to create voxelized, dithered breast phantoms with continuous gradations between glandular and adipose tissues. Moreover, the new phantom replicates the low-end density (representing adipose tissue) using third party material, Jf Flexible, and increases the high-end density to the density of glandular tissue and beyond by either doping Jf Flexible with salts and nanoparticles or using a new commercial resin, VeroPureWhite. An insert design is utilized to add masses, calcifications, and iodinated objects into the phantom for increased utility. The uniform chest wall region provides a space for traditional QC objects such as line pair patterns for measuring resolution and scale bars for measuring printer linearity. Incorporating these distinct design modules enables us to create an improved, complete breast phantom to better evaluate clinical mammography systems for lesion and calcification detection and standard QC performance evaluation.