Accurate 3D Attenuation Map for SPECT Images Reconstruction

Author(s): Hamida Romdhane, Mohamed Ali Cherni and Dorra Ben Sellem

Background: Scintigraphic images are affected by the phenomenon of attenuation of gamma photons. To improve the quality of single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) images, it is necessary to correct the attenuation. It is generally realized through the use of an attenuation map derived from Computed Tomography (CT). In this paper, we proposed a new 3-D map to correct the attenuation in SPECT images. The proposed method combines SPECT and CT medical imaging exams. XRay CT-images are used to extract lung regions, which will be multiplied by the lung’s Hounsfield Unit to finally obtain the 3D-attenuation map. This obtained map will be next used in SPECT image reconstruction by applying the 3-D maximum likelihood expectation maximization (MLEM) algorithm. Results show that the proposed method enhanced the quality of the SPECT images quantitatively and qualitatively. In fact, it increases the Image Quality Index, the structural similarity index and the peak of the signal to noise ratio of the obtained image comparing to other confirmed literature methods. In addition, it guarantees a lower value of the mean squared error. Otherwise, the superiority of the method is confirmed by the Dunnett” test t” which computes the significant difference of the obtained results. In fact, the proposed method obtained a p-value (inferior to 0.05) for all executed tests.


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