Currently, the glandular dose is evaluated quantitatively on the basis of the measured data using phantom, and not in a dose based on the mammary gland structure of an individual patient. However, mammary gland structures of the patients are different from each other and mammary gland dose of an individual patient cannot be obtained by the existing methods. In this study, we present an automated estimation method of mammary gland dose by means of mammary structure which is measured automatically using mammogram. In this method, mammary gland structure is extracted by Gabor filter; mammary region is segmented by the automated thresholding. For the evaluation, mammograms of 100 patients diagnosed with category 1 were collected. Using these mammograms we compared the mammary gland ratio measured by proposed method and visual evaluation. As a result, 78% of the total cases were matched. Furthermore, the mammary gland ratio and average glandular dose among the patients with same breast thickness was matched well. These results show that the proposed method may be useful for the estimation of average glandular dose for the individual patients.
To obtain patient entrance surface dose in X-ray photography, a calculation method based on measured exposure or air kerma radiated from X-ray tube is generally used. Two factors are necessary for this calculation: (1) exposure/air kerma to absorb dose conversion factor and (2) back-scatter factor (BSF) based on X-ray quality and on field size. These BSFs are commonly obtained by interpolation from existent data which were given for a water phantom whose entrance surface is flat. Since patientʼs surface in X-ray photograph is not flat, some error may occur when existent BSF is used in this calculation. In this article, BSF for water phantom with cylindrical surface and elliptic cylinder surface were calculated by means of the Monte Carlo simulation. And these BSFs were compared with BSF for flat surface phantom. As a result (1) radius of curvature of cylindrical phantom or horizontal axis of elliptic cylinder phantom is smaller, (2) half value layer of X-ray is larger, (3) field size is larger, difference of these BSF with that for flat surface phantom tends to be larger. Maximum difference by calculation condition assumed in this article was more than 10%. The cause of this difference is because scattering volume in irradiated body of cylindrical or elliptic cylinder phantom is smaller than flat surface phantom. To obtain patient entrance surface dose more precisely, it is necessary to use BSF respectively calculated for phantom resembling patientʼs body such as cylindrical or elliptic cylinder phantom by means of the Monte Carlo simulation.
It is well-known that metal artifacts have a harmful effect on the image quality of computed tomography (CT) images. However, the physical property remains still unknown. In this study, we investigated the relationship between metal artifacts and tube currents using statistics of extremes. A commercially available phantom for measuring CT dose index 160 mm in diameter was prepared and a brass rod 13 mm in diameter was placed at the centerline of the phantom. This phantom was used as a target object to evaluate metal artifacts and was scanned using an area detector CT scanner with various tube currents under a constant tube voltage of 120 kV. Sixty parallel line segments with a length of 100 pixels were placed to cross metal artifacts on CT images and the largest difference between two adjacent CT values in each of 60 CT value profiles of these line segments was employed as a feature variable for measuring metal artifacts; these feature variables were analyzed on the basis of extreme value theory. The CT value variation induced by metal artifacts was statistically characterized by Gumbel distribution, which was one of the extreme value distributions; namely, metal artifacts have the same statistical characteristic as streak artifacts. Therefore, Gumbel evaluation method makes it possible to analyze not only streak artifacts but also metal artifacts. Furthermore, the location parameter in Gumbel distribution was shown to be in inverse proportion to the square root of a tube current. This result suggested that metal artifacts have the same dose dependence as image noises.
Purpose: The aim of this study was to validate the reliability of dose calibrators for measuring the radioactivity of several radioisotopes in multi-institution. Methods: We evaluated the measurement accuracy of dose calibrators using a commercially available source (67 Ga, 99m Tc, 123 I, 201 TL). Nine dose calibrators (five models) in seven institutions were performed in this study. Each source was measured at least 3 times a day over a period of 4 half-life. Linearity of concentration (%error value) and percent difference values (%diff measurement) between measured and estimated radioactivity were calculated to evaluate the measurement accuracy. In addition, difference among institutions (%diff institution) was evaluated by the error values between measured and reference institution values. Results: Good linearity of concentration was found between measured and estimated radioactivity in 99mTc and 123I. However, %error value was increased in 67Ga and 201TL (maximum 19.3%). %diff measurements were 1.9 ± 0.3% for 67Ga, −0.9 ± 0.3% for 99mTc, 2.2 ± 0.4% for 123I, and −0.7 ± 0.3% for 201TL, respectively. Although there were no clear differences in six institutions, %diff institution in one institution tended to be higher than that obtained in other institutions. Conclusions: Our results indicated that measurement accuracy of nine dose calibrators (five models) was relatively stable. However, difference of measured values tended to be higher in a part of institution and source. It is important to perform quality assurance and quality control for dose calibrator using traceable source.
Anterolateral ligament (ALL) is one of the lateral structures in the knee that contributes to the internal rotational stability of tibia. ALL has been referred to in some recent reports to re-emphasize its importance. We visualized the ALL on 3D-MRI in 32 knees of 27 healthy volunteers (23 male knees, 4 female knees; mean age: 37 years). 3D-MRIs were performed using 1.5-T scanner [T2 weighted image (WI), SPACE: Sampling Perfection with Application optimized Contrast using different flip angle Evolutions] in the knee extended positions. The visualization rate of the ALL, the mean angle to the lateral collateral ligament (LCL), and the width and the thickness of the ALL at the joint level were investigated. The visualization rate was 100%. The mean angle to the LCL was 10.6 degrees. The mean width and the mean thickness of the ALL were 6.4 mm and 1.0 mm, respectively. The ALL is a very thin ligament with a somewhat oblique course between the lateral femoral epicondyle and the mid-third area of lateral tibial condyle. Therefore, the slice thickness and the slice angle can easily affect the ALL visualization. 3D-MRI enables acquiring thin-slice imaging data over a relatively short time, and arbitrary sections aligned with the course of the ALL can later be selected.
Recently, radiation damage to the detector apparatus employed in computed radiography (CR) mammography has become problematic. The CR system and the imaging plate (IP) applied to quality control (QC) program were also used in clinical mammography in our hospital, and the IP to which radiation damage has occurred was used for approximately 5 years (approximately 13,000 exposures). We considered using previously acquired QC image data, which is stored in a server, to investigate the influence of radiation damage to an IP. The mammography unit employed in this study was a phase contrast mammography (PCM) Mermaid (KONICA MINOLTA) system. The QC image was made newly, and it was output in the film, and thereafter the optical density of the step-phantom image was measured. An input (digital value)-output (optical density) conversion curve was plotted using the obtained data. The digital values were then converted to optical density values using a reference optical density vs. digital value curve. When a high radiation dose was applied directly, radiation damage occurred at a position on the IP where no object was present. Daily QC for mammography is conducted using an American College of Radiology (ACR) accreditation phantom and acrylic disc, and an environmental background density measurement is performed as one of the management indexes. In this study, the radiation damage sustained by the acrylic disc was shown to differ from that of the background. Thus, it was revealed that QC results are influenced by radiation damage.