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Tomography, Volume 8, Issue 2 (April 2022) – 51 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): A key issue in abdominal US is the assessment of fluid, which is usually anechoic, thus appearing “black”. The “black” pattern fluid assessment is based on a three-step analysis: 1. look for black where it should not be. This means searching for effusions or collections. 2. Check if black is too much. This means evaluating anatomical landmarks where fluid should normally be present but may be abnormally abundant. 3. Look for black that is not clearly black. This means evaluating fluid aspects, whether wholly anechoic or not (suggesting heterogeneous or corpusculated fluid). Using this simple method focused on US fluid presence and appearance should help clinicians to make a timely diagnosis. View this paper
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Review
Multidetector Computed Tomography (MDCT) Findings of Complications of Acute Cholecystitis. A Pictorial Essay
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 1159-1171; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020095 - 18 Apr 2022
Viewed by 474
Abstract
Acute cholecystitis stands out as one of the most common surgical pathologies that should always be considered in a right-upper abdominal pain emergency. For this, the importance of a correct diagnosis is well described. However, it has been demonstrated that the simple combination [...] Read more.
Acute cholecystitis stands out as one of the most common surgical pathologies that should always be considered in a right-upper abdominal pain emergency. For this, the importance of a correct diagnosis is well described. However, it has been demonstrated that the simple combination of clinical (pain, Murphy’s sign) and laboratory (leukocytosis) parameters alone does not provide for ruling in or ruling out the diagnosis of this condition, unless accompanied by a radiological exam. For a long time, and still today, ultrasonography (US) is by far the first-to-proceed radiologic exam to perform, thanks to its rapidity and very high sensibility and specificity for the diagnosis of simple acute cholecystitis. However, acute cholecystitis can undergo some complications that US struggles to find. In addition to that, studies suggest that multidetector computed tomography (MDCT) is superior in showing complicated forms of cholecystitis in relation to sensibility and specificity and for its capability of reformatting multiplanar (MPR) reconstructions that give a more detailed view of complications. They have shown to be useful for a precise evaluation of vascular complications, the anatomy of the biliary tree, and the extension of inflammation to surrounding structures (i.e., colitis). Therefore, based also on our experience, in patients with atypical presentation, or in cases with high suspicion for a complicated form, a MDCT abdomen scan is performed. In this review, the principal findings are listed and described to create a CT classification of acute complications based on anatomical and topographic criteria. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Imaging in Non-Traumatic Emergencies)
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Article
Rim Enhancement after Technically Successful Transarterial Chemoembolization in Hepatocellular Carcinoma: A Potential Mimic of Incomplete Embolization or Reactive Hyperemia?
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 1148-1158; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020094 - 15 Apr 2022
Viewed by 531
Abstract
Contrast enhancement at the margins/rim of embolization areas in hepatocellular-carcinoma (HCC) lesions treated with transarterial chemoembolization (TACE) might be an early prognostic indicator for HCC recurrence. The aim of this study was to evaluate the predictive value of rim perfusion for TACE recurrence [...] Read more.
Contrast enhancement at the margins/rim of embolization areas in hepatocellular-carcinoma (HCC) lesions treated with transarterial chemoembolization (TACE) might be an early prognostic indicator for HCC recurrence. The aim of this study was to evaluate the predictive value of rim perfusion for TACE recurrence as determined by perfusion CT (PCT). A total of 52 patients (65.6 ± 9.3 years) underwent PCT directly before, immediately after (within 48 h) and at follow-up (95.3 ± 12.5 days) after TACE. Arterial-liver perfusion (ALP), portal-venous perfusion (PVP) and hepatic-perfusion index (HPI) were evaluated in normal liver parenchyma, and on the embolization rim as well as the tumor bed. A total of 42 lesions were successfully treated, and PCT measurements showed no residually vascularized tumor areas. Embolization was not entirely successful in 10 patients with remaining arterialized focal nodular areas (ALP 34.7 ± 10.1 vs. 4.4 ± 5.3 mL/100 mL/min, p < 0.0001). Perfusion values at the TACE rim were lower in responders compared to normal adjacent liver parenchyma and edges of incompletely embolized tumors (ALP liver 16.3 ± 10.1 mL/100 mL/min, rim responder 8.8 ± 8.7 mL/100 mL/min, rim non-responder 23.4 ± 8.6 mL/100 mL/min, p = 0.005). At follow-up, local tumor relapse was observed in 17/42, and 15/42 showed no recurrence (ALP 39.1 ± 10.1 mL/100 mL/min vs. 10.0 ± 7.4 mL/100 mL/min, p = 0.0008); four patients had de novo disseminated disease and six patients were lost in follow-up. Rim perfusion was lower compared to adjacent recurring HCC and not different between groups. HCC lesions showed no rim perfusion after TACE, neither immediately after nor at follow-up at three months, both for mid-term responders and mid-term relapsing HCCs, indicating that rim enhancement is not a sign of reactive hyperemia and not predictive of early HCC recurrence. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Cancer Imaging)
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Case Report
Dermoid Cysts of the Asterion: An Unusual Location for Unusual Dermoids, Radiological Findings and Neurosurgical Implications
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 1141-1147; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020093 - 14 Apr 2022
Viewed by 380
Abstract
Asterion is an uncommon site for lesions, especially dermoid cysts. We report a case series of three asterional intracranial dermoid cysts, which, to the best of our knowledge, have never been described before. Patients presented with non-specific symptoms and underwent surgical excision of [...] Read more.
Asterion is an uncommon site for lesions, especially dermoid cysts. We report a case series of three asterional intracranial dermoid cysts, which, to the best of our knowledge, have never been described before. Patients presented with non-specific symptoms and underwent surgical excision of the lesions. It is crucial to correctly diagnose intracranial masses and to identify their relationships with surrounding anatomical structures, especially if the location is unusual as the asterion, to plan surgery. The challenge of this tumor location is to preserve the venous drainage system during surgical procedures, because of the contiguity between the asterion and the transverse–sigmoid junction. Rupturing or damaging of the venous drainage system have been proven to be catastrophic because they lengthen surgical time and present dire consequences for patients. In conclusion, it is crucial to familiarize with atypical dermoid presentation to ensure proper diagnoses and to perform adequate imaging for optimal surgical planning. Full article
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Article
Effect of Cardiac Phase on Cardiac Output Index Derived from Dynamic CT Myocardial Perfusion Imaging
by , , and
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 1129-1140; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020092 - 14 Apr 2022
Viewed by 428
Abstract
Purpose: The aortic time-enhancement curve obtained from dynamic CT myocardial perfusion imaging can be used to derive the cardiac output (CO) index based on the indicator dilution principle. The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of cardiac phase at which [...] Read more.
Purpose: The aortic time-enhancement curve obtained from dynamic CT myocardial perfusion imaging can be used to derive the cardiac output (CO) index based on the indicator dilution principle. The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of cardiac phase at which CT myocardial perfusion imaging is triggered on the CO index measurement with this approach. Methods: Electrocardiogram (ECG) gated myocardial perfusion imaging was performed on farm pigs with consecutive cardiac axial scans using a large-coverage CT scanner (Revolution, GE Healthcare) after intravenous contrast administration. Multiple sets of dynamic contrast-enhanced (DCE) cardiac images were reconstructed retrospectively from 30% to 80% R-R intervals with a 5% phase increment. The time-enhancement curve sampled from above the aortic orifice in each DCE image set was fitted with a modified gamma variate function (MGVF). The fitted curve was then normalized to the baseline data point unaffected by the streak artifact emanating from the contrast solution in the right heart chamber. The Stewart–Hamilton equation was used to calculate the CO index based on the integral of the fitted normalized aortic curve, and the results were compared among different cardiac phases. Results: The aortic time-enhancement curves sampled at different cardiac phases were different from each other, especially in the baseline portion of the curve where the effect of streak artifact was prominent. After properly normalizing and denoising with a MGVF, the integrals of the aortic curve were minimally different among cardiac phases (0.228 ± 0.001 Hounsfield Unit × second). The corresponding mean CO index was 4.031 ± 0.028 L/min. There were no statistical differences in either the integral of the aortic curve or CO index among different cardiac phases (p > 0.05 for all phases). Full article
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Article
Noise-Based Image Harmonization Significantly Increases Repeatability and Reproducibility of Radiomics Features in PET Images: A Phantom Study
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 1113-1128; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020091 - 13 Apr 2022
Viewed by 488
Abstract
For multicenter clinical studies, characterizing the robustness of image-derived radiomics features is essential. Features calculated on PET images have been shown to be very sensitive to image noise. The purpose of this work was to investigate the efficacy of a relatively simple harmonization [...] Read more.
For multicenter clinical studies, characterizing the robustness of image-derived radiomics features is essential. Features calculated on PET images have been shown to be very sensitive to image noise. The purpose of this work was to investigate the efficacy of a relatively simple harmonization strategy on feature robustness and agreement. A purpose-built texture pattern phantom was scanned on 10 different PET scanners in 7 institutions with various different image acquisition and reconstruction protocols. An image harmonization technique based on equalizing a contrast-to-noise ratio was employed to generate a “harmonized” alongside a “standard” dataset for a reproducibility study. In addition, a repeatability study was performed with images from a single PET scanner of variable image noise, varying the binning time of the reconstruction. Feature agreement was measured using the intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC). In the repeatability study, 81/93 features had a lower ICC on the images with the highest image noise as compared to the images with the lowest image noise. Using the harmonized dataset significantly improved the feature agreement for five of the six investigated feature classes over the standard dataset. For three feature classes, high feature agreement corresponded with higher sensitivity to the different patterns, suggesting a way to select suitable features for predictive models. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Quantitative Imaging Network)
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Article
Implications of the Harmonization of [18F]FDG-PET/CT Imaging for Response Assessment of Treatment in Radiotherapy Planning
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 1097-1112; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020090 - 12 Apr 2022
Viewed by 523
Abstract
The purpose of this work is to present useful recommendations for the use of [18F]FDG-PET/CT imaging in radiotherapy planning and monitoring under different versions of EARL accreditation for harmonization of PET devices. A proof-of-concept experiment designed on an anthropomorphic phantom was [...] Read more.
The purpose of this work is to present useful recommendations for the use of [18F]FDG-PET/CT imaging in radiotherapy planning and monitoring under different versions of EARL accreditation for harmonization of PET devices. A proof-of-concept experiment designed on an anthropomorphic phantom was carried out to establish the most suitable interpolation methods of the PET images in the different steps of the planning procedure. Based on PET/CT images obtained by using these optimal interpolations for the old EARL accreditation (EARL1) and for the new one (EARL2), the treatment plannings of representative actual clinical cases were calculated, and the clinical implications of the resulting differences were analyzed. As expected, EARL2 provided smaller volumes with higher resolution than EARL1. The increase in the size of the reconstructed volumes with EARL1 accreditation caused high doses in the organs at risk and in the regions adjacent to the target volumes. EARL2 accreditation allowed an improvement in the accuracy of the PET imaging precision, allowing more personalized radiotherapy. This work provides recommendations for those centers that intend to benefit from the new accreditation, EARL2, and can help build confidence of those that must continue working under the EARL1 accreditation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapy Monitoring Based on PET Imaging)
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Communication
Diagnostic Performance of Preoperative Choline-PET/CT in Patients Undergoing Salvage Lymph Node Dissection for Recurrent Prostate Cancer: A Multicenter Experience
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 1090-1096; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020089 - 11 Apr 2022
Viewed by 350
Abstract
We aimed to retrospectively analyze consecutive prostate cancer patients diagnosed with biochemical or clinical recurrence after local treatment with curative intent, with no evidence of distant metastases, who underwent positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) with choline followed by salvage lymph node dissection (SLND) [...] Read more.
We aimed to retrospectively analyze consecutive prostate cancer patients diagnosed with biochemical or clinical recurrence after local treatment with curative intent, with no evidence of distant metastases, who underwent positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) with choline followed by salvage lymph node dissection (SLND) in three academic centers between 2013 and 2020. A total of 27 men were included in the analyses. Sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values, and accuracy of choline-PET/CT in predicting pathology-proven lymph node involvement were 75%, 43%, 79%, 38% and 67% on per-patient and 70%, 86%, 80%, 78%, and 79% on per-site analyses, respectively, with the differences in specificity and NPV between per-patient and per-site analyses being statistically significant (p = 0.03 and 0.04, respectively). The study provides further insight into the role of preoperative choline-PET/CT in patients undergoing SLND for recurrent PC. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in the Radiography of Prostate Cancer)
Article
Dose Reduction and Diagnostic Performance of Tin Filter–Based Spectral Shaping CT in Patients with Colorectal Cancer
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 1079-1089; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020088 - 08 Apr 2022
Viewed by 379
Abstract
Routine CT examinations are crucial in colorectal cancer patients (CCPs); however, the high frequency of radiation exposure is a significant concern. This study investigated the radiation dose, image quality, and diagnostic performance of tin filter-based spectral shaping chest–abdominal–pelvic (CAP) CT for CCPs. We [...] Read more.
Routine CT examinations are crucial in colorectal cancer patients (CCPs); however, the high frequency of radiation exposure is a significant concern. This study investigated the radiation dose, image quality, and diagnostic performance of tin filter-based spectral shaping chest–abdominal–pelvic (CAP) CT for CCPs. We reviewed 44 CCPs who underwent single-phase enhanced tin-filtered 100 kV (TF100kV) and standard 120 kV (ST120kV) CAP CT on separate days. Radiation metrics including the volume CT dose index (CTDIvol), dose-length product (DLP), and effective dose (ED) were calculated for both protocols. Two radiologists assessed the presence of the following lesions: lung metastasis, liver metastasis, lymph node metastasis, peritoneal dissemination, and bone metastasis. The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) was calculated for the diagnostic performance of each protocol. Radiation metrics of the TF100kV protocol were significantly lower than those of the ST120kV protocol (CDTIvol 1.60 ± 0.31 mGy vs. 14.4 ± 2.50, p < 0.0001; DLP 107.1 (95.9–125.5) mGy·cm vs. 996.7 (886.2–1144.3), p < 0.0001; ED 1.93 (1.73–2.26) mSv vs. 17.9 (16.0–20.6), p < 0.0001, respectively). TF100kV protocol achieved comparable diagnostic performance to that of the ST120kV protocol (AUC for lung metastasis: 1.00 vs. 0.94; liver metastasis: 0.88 vs. 0.83, respectively). TF100kV protocol could substantially reduce the radiation dose by 89% compared to that with the ST120kV protocol while maintaining good diagnostic performance in CCPs. Full article
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Article
Different Prognostic Values of Dual-Time-Point FDG PET/CT Imaging Features According to Treatment Modality in Patients with Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 1066-1078; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020087 - 08 Apr 2022
Viewed by 464
Abstract
This study was aimed to investigate whether dual-time-point F-18 fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) positron emission tomography (PET)/computed tomography (CT) imaging features had different prognostic values according to the treatment modality in patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). We retrospectively reviewed 121 NSCLC patients with [...] Read more.
This study was aimed to investigate whether dual-time-point F-18 fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) positron emission tomography (PET)/computed tomography (CT) imaging features had different prognostic values according to the treatment modality in patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). We retrospectively reviewed 121 NSCLC patients with surgical resection (surgery group) and 69 NSCLC patients with chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy (CRT group), who underwent pretreatment dual-time-point FDG PET/CT. The maximum standardized uptake value (SUV), metabolic tumor volume (MTV), total lesion glycolysis (TLG), SUV histogram entropy of primary cancer, and the percent changes in these parameters (Δparameters) were measured. In multivariate analysis, MTV, TLG, and entropy on both early and delayed PET/CT scans were significantly associated with progression-free survival (PFS) in the surgery group, but all Δparameters failed to show a significant association. In the CRT group, TLG on the early PET, maximum SUV on the delayed PET, ΔMTV, and ΔTLG were significant independent predictors for PFS. In the surgery group, patients with high values of MTV, TLG, and entropy had worse survival, whereas, in the CRT group, patients with high values of ΔMTV and ΔTLG had better survival. Dual-time-point FDG PET/CT parameters showed different prognostic values between the surgery and CRT groups of NSCLC patients. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Advances in Medical Imaging and Applied Radiology in Cancers)
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Case Report
18F-FES PET/CT Improves the Detection of Intraorbital Metastases in Estrogen-Receptor-Positive Breast Cancer: Two Representative Cases and Review of the Literature
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 1060-1065; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020086 - 07 Apr 2022
Viewed by 587
Abstract
Orbital metastases are a rare but life-altering complication in cancer. Most commonly seen in breast cancer, metastases to the optic nerves or extraocular muscles can have a devastating impact on visual acuity and quality of life. Hormone receptor status plays a central role [...] Read more.
Orbital metastases are a rare but life-altering complication in cancer. Most commonly seen in breast cancer, metastases to the optic nerves or extraocular muscles can have a devastating impact on visual acuity and quality of life. Hormone receptor status plays a central role in metastatic breast cancer treatment, with endocrine therapy often representing first-line therapy in hormone-receptor-positive cancers. Staging and treatment response evaluation with positron emission tomography (PET) computed tomography (CT) imaging with 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose (18F-FDG) is limited by high physiologic uptake in the intracranial and intraorbital compartments. Thus, traditional staging scans with 18F-FDG PET/CT may under-detect intraorbital and intracranial metastatic disease and inaccurately evaluate active metastatic disease burden. In comparison, 18F-fluoroestradiol (18F-FES) is a novel estrogen-receptor-specific PET radiotracer, which more accurately assesses the intracranial and intraorbital compartments in patients with estrogen-receptor-positive (ER+) cancers than 18F-FDG, due to lack of physiologic background activity in these regions. We present two cases of breast cancer patients with orbital metastases confirmed on MR imaging who underwent PET/CT imaging with 18F-FES and 18F-FDG. Multimodality imaging with 18F-FES PET/CT offers higher detection sensitivity of orbital metastases, compared with traditional 18F-FDG PET/CT imaging, and can improve the assessment of treatment response in patients with estrogen-receptor-positive (ER+) cancers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tumor Diagnosis and Treatment: Imaging Assessment)
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Article
Integrating Point of Care Ultrasound Education into Clinical Practice at the Emergency Department
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 1052-1059; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020085 - 06 Apr 2022
Viewed by 399
Abstract
Point of care ultrasound (POCUS) competency is now required learning for emergency medicine trainees. However, there is a wide range of areas that need to be assessed when determining competence. Therefore, this study aims to evaluate competence levels of POCUS skill acquisition including [...] Read more.
Point of care ultrasound (POCUS) competency is now required learning for emergency medicine trainees. However, there is a wide range of areas that need to be assessed when determining competence. Therefore, this study aims to evaluate competence levels of POCUS skill acquisition including the areas of image acquisition, image interpretation and clinical integration of the emergency medicine residents while on shift in real clinical practice situations. This was a retrospective descriptive study. This study was conducted at Srinagarind Hospital, Thailand from January 2021 through December 2021. The data were collected and reviewed from electronic medical records, ultrasound images and video clips. All POCUS competency skills were assessed by researcher staff. Our results demonstrated that our learners had overall satisfactory competence of image acquisition, satisfactory image interpretation skills, and good clinical integration skills. However, obstetrics and gynecology (OB-GYN) ultrasound scores were poor and cardiac ultrasound had the most varied score of image quality. This study clearly showed the measurable benefits of a POCUS course being integrated into real clinical practice. Full article
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Essay
Systemic Emergencies in COVID-19 Patient: A Pictorial Review
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 1041-1051; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020084 - 06 Apr 2022
Viewed by 471
Abstract
Since the first report of the outbreak in Wuhan, China in December 2019, as of 1 September 2021, the World Health Organization has confirmed more than 239 million cases of the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) infectious disease named coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), with more [...] Read more.
Since the first report of the outbreak in Wuhan, China in December 2019, as of 1 September 2021, the World Health Organization has confirmed more than 239 million cases of the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) infectious disease named coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), with more than 4.5 million deaths. Although SARS-CoV-2 mainly involves the respiratory tract, it is considered to be a systemic disease. Imaging plays a pivotal role in the diagnosis of all manifestations of COVID-19 disease, as well as its related complications. The figure of the radiologist is fundamental in the management and treatment of the patient. The authors try to provide a systematic approach based on an imaging review of major multi-organ manifestations of this infection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Imaging in Non-Traumatic Emergencies)
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Article
Internal Jugular Central Venous Catheter Tip Migration: Patient and Procedural Factors
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 1033-1040; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020083 - 03 Apr 2022
Viewed by 512
Abstract
Background: The ideal central venous catheter (CVC) tip position placement is controversial, and CVCs do not remain in a fixed position after placement. This study evaluates both patient and procedural factors which may influence CVC tip migration and subsequent catheter dysfunction. Materials and [...] Read more.
Background: The ideal central venous catheter (CVC) tip position placement is controversial, and CVCs do not remain in a fixed position after placement. This study evaluates both patient and procedural factors which may influence CVC tip migration and subsequent catheter dysfunction. Materials and Methods: This study evaluates CVC placements at a single institution. Patient age, gender, body mass index (BMI), catheter laterality, CVC type and indication for central venous access were recorded. Catheter tip location relative to the carina was measured at time of placement and removal utilizing supine fluoroscopic imaging. Patients’ electronic medical records were reviewed for evidence of catheter dysfunction. Statistical analysis was performed utilizing odds ratios and two tailed Student’s t-test. Results: 177 patients were included (101 female; mean age 55; mean BMI 29.2). Catheter types included 122 ports, 50 tunneled large bore central venous catheters (≥9 French), and 5 tunneled small bore central venous catheters (<9 French). 127 were right sided catheters, and 50 were left sided. Left sided CVCs had a mean cranial tip migration of 3.2 cm (standard deviation ±2.9 cm) compared to 0.8 cm (standard deviation ±1.9 cm) for right sided catheters (p = 0.000008). Catheters that migrated cranially by >2 cm had more than 7× greater risk of dysfunction compared to catheters that migrated ≤2 cm (odds ratio of 7.2; p = 0.0001). Left sided CVCs were significantly more likely to have >2 cm of cranial migration (odds ratio 6.9, 95% CI 3.4–14.2, p < 0.0001) and had a higher rate of dysfunction, likely due to this cranial migration (32% vs. 4.7%; p = 0.00001). Gender and BMI were not found to be associated with catheter dysfunction or an increased odds ratio of >2 cm cranial migration. Conclusions: Left-sided CVCs migrate an average of 2.4 cm cranially more than right-sided catheters. Additionally, when migration occurs, left-sided catheters are more likely to be dysfunctional. These suggest that lower initial placement may be beneficial in left-sided catheters. Full article
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Article
Quantitative Assessment of Airway Changes in Fibrotic Interstitial Lung Abnormality Patients by Chest CT According to Cumulative Cigarette Smoking
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 1024-1032; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020082 - 03 Apr 2022
Viewed by 516
Abstract
Purpose: The aim of this study was to evaluate the role of Pi10 in patients with fibrotic interstitial lung abnormality (fibrotic ILA) in a chest CT, according to cumulative cigarette smoking. Methods: We retrospectively assessed 54 fibrotic ILA patients and 18 healthy non-smokers [...] Read more.
Purpose: The aim of this study was to evaluate the role of Pi10 in patients with fibrotic interstitial lung abnormality (fibrotic ILA) in a chest CT, according to cumulative cigarette smoking. Methods: We retrospectively assessed 54 fibrotic ILA patients and 18 healthy non-smokers (control) who underwent non-enhanced CT and pulmonary function tests. We quantitatively analyzed airway changes (the inner luminal area, airway inner parameter, airway wall thickness, Pi10, skewness, and kurtosis) in the chest CT of fibrotic ILA patients, and the fibrotic ILA patients were categorized into groups based on pack-years: light, moderate, heavy. Airway change data and pulmonary function tests among the three groups of fibrotic ILA patients were compared with those of the control group by one-way ANOVA. Results: Mean skewness (2.58 ± 0.36) and kurtosis (7.64 ± 2.36) in the control group were significantly different from those of the fibrotic ILA patients (1.89 ± 0.37 and 3.62 ± 1.70, respectively, p < 0.001). In fibrotic ILA group, only heavy smokers had significantly increased Pi10 (mean increase 0.04, p = 0.013), increased airway wall thickness of the segmental bronchi (mean increase 0.06 mm, p = 0.005), and decreased lung diffusing capacity for carbon monoxide (p = 0.023). Conclusion: Pi10, as a biomaker of quantitative CT in fibrotic ILA patients, can reveal that smoking affects airway remodeling. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Quantitative Imaging in Oncology)
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Article
An Anthropomorphic Digital Reference Object (DRO) for Simulation and Analysis of Breast DCE MRI Techniques
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 1005-1023; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020081 - 02 Apr 2022
Viewed by 482
Abstract
Advances in accelerated magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) continue to push the bounds on achievable spatial and temporal resolution while maintaining a clinically acceptable image quality. Validation tools, including numerical simulations, are needed to characterize the repeatability and reproducibility of such methods for use [...] Read more.
Advances in accelerated magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) continue to push the bounds on achievable spatial and temporal resolution while maintaining a clinically acceptable image quality. Validation tools, including numerical simulations, are needed to characterize the repeatability and reproducibility of such methods for use in quantitative imaging applications. We describe the development of a simulation framework for analyzing and optimizing accelerated MRI acquisition and reconstruction techniques used in dynamic contrast enhanced (DCE) breast imaging. The simulation framework, in the form of a digital reference object (DRO), consists of four modules that control different aspects of the simulation, including the appearance and physiological behavior of the breast tissue as well as the MRI acquisition settings, to produce simulated k-space data for a DCE breast exam. The DRO design and functionality are described along with simulation examples provided to show potential applications of the DRO. The included simulation results demonstrate the ability of the DRO to simulate a variety of effects including the creation of simulated lesions, tissue enhancement modeled by the generalized kinetic model, T1-relaxation, fat signal precession and saturation, acquisition SNR, and changes in temporal resolution. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Quantitative Imaging Network)
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Protocol
Thoracic Spine CT Hidden Treasures: Lung Assessment and Extraspinal Findings in Patients with Vertebral Fractures Studied with Full FOV during Breath Hold: Technical Note
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 999-1004; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020080 - 02 Apr 2022
Viewed by 462
Abstract
Thoracic spine CTs are usually performed during free breathing and with a narrow field of view; this common practice systematically excludes the assessment of lungs and other extraspinal structures, even if these have been irradiated during the examination. At our institution we perform [...] Read more.
Thoracic spine CTs are usually performed during free breathing and with a narrow field of view; this common practice systematically excludes the assessment of lungs and other extraspinal structures, even if these have been irradiated during the examination. At our institution we perform thoracic spine CT during breath hold with additional full FOV reconstructions; this allows us to also evaluate lungs and extraspinal pathologies in the same examination with no added costs or further radiation exposure. If this simple and costless technical change is routinely applied to thoracic spine CT many concomitant extraspinal pathologies can be ruled out, from neoplasms to pneumonia; the suggested modification also allows an early diagnosis and avoids recalling and re-irradiating the patient in case these findings are partially included in the study. This practice can be further useful during the current pandemic in order to screen any lung opacities suspicious for COVID-19. Full article
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Article
Radiation Dose Management in Pediatric Brain CT According to Age and Weight as Continuous Variables
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 985-998; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020079 - 01 Apr 2022
Viewed by 427
Abstract
The diagnostic reference levels (DRLs) for pediatric brain computed tomography (CT) are provided for groups divided according to age. We investigated the relationships of radiation dose indices (volume CT dose index and dose length product) with age and weight, as continuous variables, in [...] Read more.
The diagnostic reference levels (DRLs) for pediatric brain computed tomography (CT) are provided for groups divided according to age. We investigated the relationships of radiation dose indices (volume CT dose index and dose length product) with age and weight, as continuous variables, in pediatric brain CT. In a retrospective analysis, 980 pediatric brain CT examinations were analyzed. Curve fitting was performed for plots of the CT dose indices versus age and weight, and equations to estimate age- and weight-dependent standard dose indices were derived. Standard dose indices were estimated using the equations, and the errors were calculated. The results showed a biphasic increase in dose indices with increasing age and weight, characterized by a rapid initial and subsequent slow increase. Logarithmic, power, and bilinear functions were well fitted to the plots, allowing estimation of standard dose indices at an arbitrary age or weight. Error analysis suggested that weight was mildly better than age and that the best results were obtained with the bilinear function. Curve fitting of the relationship between CT dose indices and age or weight facilitates the determination of standard dose indices in pediatric brain CT at each facility and is expected to aid the establishment and application of the DRLs. Full article
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Article
Quantitative Assessment of Late Gadolinium Enhancement and Edema at Cardiac Magnetic Resonance in Low-Risk Myocarditis Patients
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 974-984; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020078 - 01 Apr 2022
Viewed by 466
Abstract
In this study, we aimed to quantify LGE and edema at short-tau inversion recovery sequences on cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) in patients with myocarditis. We retrospectively evaluated CMR examinations performed during the acute phase and at follow-up. Forty-seven patients were eligible for retrospective [...] Read more.
In this study, we aimed to quantify LGE and edema at short-tau inversion recovery sequences on cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) in patients with myocarditis. We retrospectively evaluated CMR examinations performed during the acute phase and at follow-up. Forty-seven patients were eligible for retrospective LGE assessment, and, among them, twenty-five patients were eligible for edema evaluation. Both groups were paired with age- and sex-matched controls. The median left ventricle LGE was 6.4% (interquartile range 5.0–9.2%) at the acute phase, 4.4% (3.3–7.2%) at follow-up, and 4.3% (3.0–5.3%) in controls, the acute phase being higher than both follow-up and controls (p < 0.001 for both), while follow-up and controls did not differ (p = 0.139). An optimal threshold of 5.0% was obtained for LGE with 87% sensitivity and 48% specificity; the positive likelihood ratio (LR) was 1.67, and the negative LR was 0.27. Edema was 12.8% (9.4–18.1%) at the acute phase, 7.3% (5.5–8.8%) at follow-up, and 6.7% (5.6–8.6%) in controls, the acute phase being higher than both follow-up and controls (both p < 0.001), while follow-up and controls did not differ (p = 0.900). An optimal threshold of 9.5% was obtained for edema with a sensitivity of 76% and a specificity of 88%; the positive LR was 6.33, and the negative LR was 0.27. LGE and edema thresholds are useful in cases of suspected mild myocarditis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Cardiovascular Imaging)
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Review
State of the Art on the Role of Postmortem Computed Tomography Angiography and Magnetic Resonance Imaging in the Diagnosis of Cardiac Causes of Death: A Narrative Review
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 961-973; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020077 - 01 Apr 2022
Viewed by 527
Abstract
The need of a minimally invasive approach, especially in cases of cultural or religious oppositions to the internal examination of the body, has led over the years to the introduction of postmortem CT (PMCT) methodologies within forensic investigations for the comprehension of the [...] Read more.
The need of a minimally invasive approach, especially in cases of cultural or religious oppositions to the internal examination of the body, has led over the years to the introduction of postmortem CT (PMCT) methodologies within forensic investigations for the comprehension of the cause of death in selected cases (e.g., traumatic deaths, acute hemorrhages, etc.), as well as for personal identification. The impossibility to yield clear information concerning the coronary arteries due to the lack of an active circulation to adequately distribute contrast agents has been subsequently overcome by the introduction of coronary-targeted PMCT Angiography (PMCTA), which has revealed useful in the detection of stenoses related to calcifications and/or atherosclerotic plaques, as well as in the suspicion of thrombosis. In parallel, due to the best ability to study the soft tissues, cardiac postmortem MR (PMMR) methodologies have been further implemented, which proved suitable for the detection and aging of infarcted areas, and for cardiomyopathies. Hence, the purpose of the present work to shed light on the state of the art concerning the value of both coronary-targeted PMCTA and PMMR in the diagnosis of coronary artery disease and/or myocardial infarction as causes of death, further evaluating their suitability as alternatives or complementary approaches to standard autopsy and histologic investigations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Cardiovascular Imaging)
Article
MRI Assessment of Motor Capabilities in Patients with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy According to the Motor Function Measure Scale
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 948-960; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020076 - 01 Apr 2022
Viewed by 534
Abstract
The research was aimed on the study of motor capabilities on the Motor Function Measure (MFM) scale in ambulant and non-ambulant patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy, and to conduct a correlation analysis between the results of the MFM scale and Magnetic Resonance Imaging [...] Read more.
The research was aimed on the study of motor capabilities on the Motor Function Measure (MFM) scale in ambulant and non-ambulant patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy, and to conduct a correlation analysis between the results of the MFM scale and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) data. A total of 46 boys who had genetically confirmed Duchenne muscular dystrophy (age from 2.1 to 16.7 years) and were in clinical rehabilitation were investigated. An assessment was performed according to the Motor Function Measure scale (subsections D1, D2, D3, and the total score), an MRI obtaining T1-VI of the muscles of the pelvic girdle was conducted, and the thighs and lower legs were further assessed in terms of the severity of fibrous-fat degeneration according to the Mercuri scale. In ambulant patients, the ability to stand up and move (D1) was 74.4%, axial and proximal motor functions (D2)—97.6%, distal motor functions (D3)—96.2%, and total score was 87.9%. In non-ambulant patients, the ability to stand up and move (D1) was 1.7%, axial and proximal motor functions (D2)—47%, distal motor functions (D3)—67.5%, and the total score—33.1%. A high inverse correlation (r = −0.7, p < 0.05) of the MRI data of the pelvic girdle and thighs with tasks D1, as well as a noticeable inverse correlation with tasks D2 (r = −0.6, p < 0.05) of the scale MFM, were revealed in the ambulant group of patients. In the non-ambulant group of patients, the MRI data of the lower legs muscles were characterized by a high inverse correlation (r = −0.7, p < 0.05) with tasks D3 and a noticeable inverse correlation (r = −0.6, p < 0.05) with tasks D1 of the MFM scale. Conclusion: The Motor Function Measure scale allows effective assessment of the motor capabilities of patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy at different stages of the disease, which is confirmed by visualization of fibro-fatty muscle replacement. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Neuroimaging)
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Article
AI Denoising Significantly Enhances Image Quality and Diagnostic Confidence in Interventional Cone-Beam Computed Tomography
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 933-947; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020075 - 01 Apr 2022
Viewed by 444
Abstract
(1) To investigate whether interventional cone-beam computed tomography (cbCT) could benefit from AI denoising, particularly with respect to patient body mass index (BMI); (2) From 1 January 2016 to 1 January 2022, 100 patients with liver-directed interventions and peri-procedural cbCT were included. The [...] Read more.
(1) To investigate whether interventional cone-beam computed tomography (cbCT) could benefit from AI denoising, particularly with respect to patient body mass index (BMI); (2) From 1 January 2016 to 1 January 2022, 100 patients with liver-directed interventions and peri-procedural cbCT were included. The unenhanced mask run and the contrast-enhanced fill run of the cbCT were reconstructed using weighted filtered back projection. Additionally, each dataset was post-processed using a novel denoising software solution. Place-consistent regions of interest measured signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) per dataset. Corrected mixed-effects analysis with BMI subgroup analyses compared objective image quality. Multiple linear regression measured the contribution of “Radiation Dose”, “Body-Mass-Index”, and “Mode” to SNR. Two radiologists independently rated diagnostic confidence. Inter-rater agreement was measured using Spearman correlation (r); (3) SNR was significantly higher in the denoised datasets than in the regular datasets (p < 0.001). Furthermore, BMI subgroup analysis showed significant SNR deteriorations in the regular datasets for higher patient BMI (p < 0.001), but stable results for denoising (p > 0.999). In regression, only denoising contributed positively towards SNR (0.6191; 95%CI 0.6096 to 0.6286; p < 0.001). The denoised datasets received overall significantly higher diagnostic confidence grades (p = 0.010), with good inter-rater agreement (r ≥ 0.795, p < 0.001). In a subgroup analysis, diagnostic confidence deteriorated significantly for higher patient BMI (p < 0.001) in the regular datasets but was stable in the denoised datasets (p ≥ 0.103).; (4) AI denoising can significantly enhance image quality in interventional cone-beam CT and effectively mitigate diagnostic confidence deterioration for rising patient BMI. Full article
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Systematic Review
Epidemiologic, Imaging, and Clinical Issues in Bezold’s Abscess: A Systematic Review
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 920-932; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020074 - 01 Apr 2022
Viewed by 461
Abstract
Bezold’s abscess is a deep neck abscess related to otomastoiditis. Due to the insidious clinical presentation, diagnosis can be extremely challenging, leading to delays in treatment and possible life-threatening complications. The literature currently provides a fragmented picture, presenting only single or small number [...] Read more.
Bezold’s abscess is a deep neck abscess related to otomastoiditis. Due to the insidious clinical presentation, diagnosis can be extremely challenging, leading to delays in treatment and possible life-threatening complications. The literature currently provides a fragmented picture, presenting only single or small number of cases. The present study aims at examining our experience and the literature findings (based on PRISMA criteria) of 97 patients with Bezold’s abscess, summarizing their epidemiology, pathogenesis, clinical presentation, imaging findings, and treatments. Bezold’s abscess is found at any age, with overt male prevalence among adults. The clinical presentation, as well as the causative pathogens, are strikingly heterogeneous. Otomastoiditis and cholesteatoma are major risk factors. A clinical history of otitis is commonly reported (43%). CT and MRI are the main diagnostic tools, proving the erosion of the mastoid tip in 53% of patients and the presence of a concomitant cholesteatoma in 40%. Intracranial vascular (24%) or infectious (9%) complications have also been reported. Diagnosis might be easily achieved when imaging (CT) is properly applied. MRI has a limited diagnostic role, but it might be crucial whenever intracranial complications or the coexistence of cholesteatoma are suspected, helping to develop proper treatment (prompt antibiotic therapy and surgery). Full article
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Article
SOUP-GAN: Super-Resolution MRI Using Generative Adversarial Networks
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 905-919; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020073 - 24 Mar 2022
Viewed by 728
Abstract
There is a growing demand for high-resolution (HR) medical images for both clinical and research applications. Image quality is inevitably traded off with acquisition time, which in turn impacts patient comfort, examination costs, dose, and motion-induced artifacts. For many image-based tasks, increasing the [...] Read more.
There is a growing demand for high-resolution (HR) medical images for both clinical and research applications. Image quality is inevitably traded off with acquisition time, which in turn impacts patient comfort, examination costs, dose, and motion-induced artifacts. For many image-based tasks, increasing the apparent spatial resolution in the perpendicular plane to produce multi-planar reformats or 3D images is commonly used. Single-image super-resolution (SR) is a promising technique to provide HR images based on deep learning to increase the resolution of a 2D image, but there are few reports on 3D SR. Further, perceptual loss is proposed in the literature to better capture the textural details and edges versus pixel-wise loss functions, by comparing the semantic distances in the high-dimensional feature space of a pre-trained 2D network (e.g., VGG). However, it is not clear how one should generalize it to 3D medical images, and the attendant implications are unclear. In this paper, we propose a framework called SOUP-GAN: Super-resolution Optimized Using Perceptual-tuned Generative Adversarial Network (GAN), in order to produce thinner slices (e.g., higher resolution in the ‘Z’ plane) with anti-aliasing and deblurring. The proposed method outperforms other conventional resolution-enhancement methods and previous SR work on medical images based on both qualitative and quantitative comparisons. Moreover, we examine the model in terms of its generalization for arbitrarily user-selected SR ratios and imaging modalities. Our model shows promise as a novel 3D SR interpolation technique, providing potential applications for both clinical and research applications. Full article
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Article
Post-Processing Bias Field Inhomogeneity Correction for Assessing Background Parenchymal Enhancement on Breast MRI as a Quantitative Marker of Treatment Response
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 891-904; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020072 - 22 Mar 2022
Viewed by 535
Abstract
Background parenchymal enhancement (BPE) of breast fibroglandular tissue (FGT) in dynamic contrast-enhanced breast magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has shown an association with response to neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NAC) in patients with breast cancer. Fully automated segmentation of FGT for BPE calculation is a challenge [...] Read more.
Background parenchymal enhancement (BPE) of breast fibroglandular tissue (FGT) in dynamic contrast-enhanced breast magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has shown an association with response to neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NAC) in patients with breast cancer. Fully automated segmentation of FGT for BPE calculation is a challenge when image artifacts are present. Low spatial frequency intensity nonuniformity due to coil sensitivity variations is known as bias or inhomogeneity and can affect FGT segmentation and subsequent BPE measurement. In this study, we utilized the N4ITK algorithm for bias correction over a restricted bilateral breast volume and compared the contralateral FGT segmentations based on uncorrected and bias-corrected images in three MRI examinations at pre-treatment, early treatment and inter-regimen timepoints during NAC. A retrospective analysis of 2 cohorts was performed: one with 735 patients enrolled in the multi-center I-SPY 2 TRIAL and the sub-cohort of 340 patients meeting a high-quality benchmark for segmentation. Bias correction substantially increased the FGT segmentation quality for 6.3–8.0% of examinations, while it substantially decreased the quality for no examination. Our results showed improvement in segmentation quality and a small but statistically significant increase in the resulting BPE measurement after bias correction at all timepoints in both cohorts. Continuing studies are examining the effects on pCR prediction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Quantitative Imaging Network)
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Article
EDNC: Ensemble Deep Neural Network for COVID-19 Recognition
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 869-890; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020071 - 21 Mar 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 637
Abstract
The automatic recognition of COVID-19 diseases is critical in the present pandemic since it relieves healthcare staff of the burden of screening for infection with COVID-19. Previous studies have proven that deep learning algorithms can be utilized to aid in the diagnosis of [...] Read more.
The automatic recognition of COVID-19 diseases is critical in the present pandemic since it relieves healthcare staff of the burden of screening for infection with COVID-19. Previous studies have proven that deep learning algorithms can be utilized to aid in the diagnosis of patients with potential COVID-19 infection. However, the accuracy of current COVID-19 recognition models is relatively low. Motivated by this fact, we propose three deep learning architectures, F-EDNC, FC-EDNC, and O-EDNC, to quickly and accurately detect COVID-19 infections from chest computed tomography (CT) images. Sixteen deep learning neural networks have been modified and trained to recognize COVID-19 patients using transfer learning and 2458 CT chest images. The proposed EDNC has then been developed using three of sixteen modified pre-trained models to improve the performance of COVID-19 recognition. The results suggested that the F-EDNC method significantly enhanced the recognition of COVID-19 infections with 97.75% accuracy, followed by FC-EDNC and O-EDNC (97.55% and 96.12%, respectively), which is superior to most of the current COVID-19 recognition models. Furthermore, a localhost web application has been built that enables users to easily upload their chest CT scans and obtain their COVID-19 results automatically. This accurate, fast, and automatic COVID-19 recognition system will relieve the stress of medical professionals for screening COVID-19 infections. Full article
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Article
Gray and White Matter Changes Associated with Psychophysical Functions Induced by Diabolo Training in Young Men
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 858-868; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020070 - 21 Mar 2022
Viewed by 638
Abstract
Learning a skill has been demonstrated to relate to neural plasticity in both animal and human brains. Performing diabolo consists of different tricks and may cause brain structural changes associated with psychophysical functions. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate gray [...] Read more.
Learning a skill has been demonstrated to relate to neural plasticity in both animal and human brains. Performing diabolo consists of different tricks and may cause brain structural changes associated with psychophysical functions. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate gray matter (GM) and white matter (WM) changes associated with psychophysical functions induced by diabolo training in healthy subjects. Fourteen healthy right-handed male subjects were enrolled to receive the diabolo training. Whole brain T1-weighted images and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) data were acquired from all subjects on a 3.0 T magnetic resonance scanner before and after the training. Voxel-based morphometry (VBM), surface-based morphometry (SBM), and voxel-wise DTI analysis were carried out to detect the GM volume, cortical thickness, and WM diffusion changes using T1-weighted image and DTI data, respectively. In addition, two-arm coordination and mirror-drawing tests were performed to evaluate their psychophysical functions before and after 2, 4, 6 and 8 weeks of training. Analysis of variance was performed to understand whether the psychophysical functions changed over time after the training. The results showed that the psychophysical functions were significantly changed over time during the training. The VBM and SBM analyses revealed that the GM volume and cortical thickness were significantly increased in the brain areas associated with visual, motor, sensory, and spatial cognition functions. The voxel-wise DTI analysis further demonstrated that the mean diffusivity was significantly reduced in the genu of corpus callosum. Moreover, significant correlations were revealed between the increase rate of GM volume and the improvement rate of psychophysical functions in the left angular gyrus. The results suggest that the diabolo training may induce increased GM volume associated with improved psychophysical function in the brain region involved in spatial cognition and attention. Therefore, we conclude that the diabolo training may improve psychophysical function which might be reflected by the increased GM volume in the angular gyrus. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Brain Imaging)
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Article
Phantom Validation of a Conservation of Activity-Based Partial Volume Correction Method for Arterial Input Function in Dynamic PET Imaging
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 842-857; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020069 - 21 Mar 2022
Viewed by 579
Abstract
Dynamic PET (dPET) imaging can be utilized to perform kinetic modelling of various physiologic processes, which are exploited by the constantly expanding range of targeted radiopharmaceuticals. To date, dPET remains primarily in the research realm due to a number of technical challenges, not [...] Read more.
Dynamic PET (dPET) imaging can be utilized to perform kinetic modelling of various physiologic processes, which are exploited by the constantly expanding range of targeted radiopharmaceuticals. To date, dPET remains primarily in the research realm due to a number of technical challenges, not least of which is addressing partial volume effects (PVE) in the input function. We propose a series of equations for the correction of PVE in the input function and present the results of a validation study, based on a purpose built phantom. 18F-dPET experiments were performed using the phantom on a set of flow tubes representing large arteries, such as the aorta (1” 2.54 cm ID), down to smaller vessels, such as the iliac arteries and veins (1/4” 0.635 cm ID). When applied to the dPET experimental images, the PVE correction equations were able to successfully correct the image-derived input functions by as much as 59 ± 35% in the presence of background, which resulted in image-derived area under the curve (AUC) values within 8 ± 9% of ground truth AUC. The peak heights were similarly well corrected to within 9 ± 10% of the scaled DCE-CT curves. The same equations were then successfully applied to correct patient input functions in the aorta and internal iliac artery/vein. These straightforward algorithms can be applied to dPET images from any PET-CT scanner to restore the input function back to a more clinically representative value, without the need for high-end Time of Flight systems or Point Spread Function correction algorithms. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Quantitative Imaging Network)
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Review
Stereogram of the Living Heart, Lung, and Adjacent Structures
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 824-841; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020068 - 17 Mar 2022
Viewed by 583
Abstract
Innovations in invasive cardiovascular diagnostics and therapeutics, not only limited to transcatheter approaches but also involving surgical approaches, are based on a precise appreciation of the three-dimensional living heart anatomy. Rapid advancements in three-dimensional cardiovascular imaging technologies in the 21st century have supported [...] Read more.
Innovations in invasive cardiovascular diagnostics and therapeutics, not only limited to transcatheter approaches but also involving surgical approaches, are based on a precise appreciation of the three-dimensional living heart anatomy. Rapid advancements in three-dimensional cardiovascular imaging technologies in the 21st century have supported such innovations through the periprocedural assessment of the clinical anatomy of the living heart. However, even if high-resolution volume-rendered images are reconstructed, they cannot provide appropriate depth perception when displayed and shared on a two-dimensional display, which is widely used in clinical settings. Currently, images reconstructed from clinical datasets can visualize fine details of the cardiovascular anatomy. Therefore, this is an optimal time for cardiologists and cardiac surgeons to revisit the classic technology, stereopsis, and obtain bonus information from carefully reconstructed clinical images. Using anaglyphs or cross/uncross-fusion of paired images, striking depth perception can be readily obtained without the need for expensive equipment. This conventional technique, when applied to high-resolution volume-rendered images, may help in obtaining appropriate diagnostics, choosing optimal therapeutics, securing procedural success, and preventing complications. Furthermore, it can be used for anatomical education. In this review, we demonstrate multiple stereoscopic images reconstructed from cardiac computed tomographic datasets and discuss their clinical and educational implications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Cardiovascular Imaging)
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Article
Bile Flow Dynamics in Patients with Cholelithiasis: An Evaluation with Cine-Dynamic Magnetic Resonance Cholangiopancreatography Using a Spatially Selective Inversion-Recovery Pulse
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 815-823; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020067 - 16 Mar 2022
Viewed by 447
Abstract
Background: A variety of pathophysiological changes in the biliary system occur in patients with cholelithiasis, but the changes in the bile flow dynamics in those patients remain unclear. The purpose of this study was to elucidate the changes in the bile flow dynamics [...] Read more.
Background: A variety of pathophysiological changes in the biliary system occur in patients with cholelithiasis, but the changes in the bile flow dynamics in those patients remain unclear. The purpose of this study was to elucidate the changes in the bile flow dynamics in patients with cholelithiasis using cine-dynamic magnetic resonance cholangiopancreatography (MRCP) with a spatially selective inversion-recovery (IR) pulse. Methods: We retrospectively examined 25 patients with gallstones (gallstone group) and 69 patients without gallstones (non-gallstone group) who underwent abdominal MRI, including in- and opposed-phase T1-weighted images and cine-dynamic MRCP with a spatially selective IR pulse. The frequency and secretion grade of the antegrade and reverse flow of the bile on the cine dynamic MRCP images and the signal intensity ratio (SIR) of the gallbladder in the in- and opposed-phase T1-weighted images were evaluated. Results: The frequency and mean secretion grade of the antegrade bile flow were significantly higher in the gallstone group than in the non-gallstone group (p = 0.011 and p = 0.003), while no significant differences in those values of the reverse bile flow were found between the two groups. The SIR of the gallbladder in the T1-weighted gradient-echo in-phase images was significantly lower in the gallstone group than in the non-gallstone group (p = 0.004). Conclusions: Cine-dynamic MRCP with a spatially selective IR pulse can noninvasively visualize changes in the bile flow dynamics of patients with gallstones. Full article
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Concept Paper
The “Black Pattern”, a Simplified Ultrasound Approach to Non-Traumatic Abdominal Emergencies
Tomography 2022, 8(2), 798-814; https://doi.org/10.3390/tomography8020066 - 15 Mar 2022
Viewed by 1824
Abstract
Background: A key issue in abdominal US is the assessment of fluid, which is usually anechoic, thus appearing “black”. Our approach focuses on searching for fluid in non-traumatic patients, providing a new, simplified method for point-of-care US (POCUS). Objective: Fluid assessment is based [...] Read more.
Background: A key issue in abdominal US is the assessment of fluid, which is usually anechoic, thus appearing “black”. Our approach focuses on searching for fluid in non-traumatic patients, providing a new, simplified method for point-of-care US (POCUS). Objective: Fluid assessment is based on a three-step analysis that we can thus summarize. 1. Look for black where it should not be. This means searching for effusions or collections. 2. Check if black is too much. This means evaluating anatomical landmarks where fluid should normally be present but may be abnormally abundant. 3. Look for black that is not clearly black. This means evaluating fluid aspects, whether wholly anechoic or not (suggesting heterogeneous or corpusculated fluid). Discussion: Using this simple method focused on US fluid presence and appearance should help clinicians to make a timely diagnosis. Although our simplified, systematic algorithm of POCUS may identify abnormalities; this usually entails a second-level imaging. An accurate knowledge of the physio–pathological and anatomical ultrasound bases remains essential in applying this algorithm. Conclusion: The black pattern approach in non -traumatic emergencies may be applied to a broad spectrum of abnormalities. It may represent a valuable aid for emergency physicians, especially if inexperienced, involved in a variety of non-traumatic scenarios. It may also be a simple and effective teaching aid for US beginners. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Imaging in Non-Traumatic Emergencies)
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