Journal of X-Ray Science and Technology - Volume Pre-press, issue Pre-press
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Journal of X-Ray Science and Technology is an international journal designed for the diverse community (biomedical, industrial and academic) of users and developers of novel x-ray imaging techniques. The purpose of the journal is to provide clear and full coverage of new developments and applications in the field.
Areas such as x-ray microlithography, x-ray astronomy and medical x-ray imaging as well as new technologies arising from fields traditionally considered unrelated to x rays (semiconductor processing, accelerator technology, ionizing and non-ionizing medical diagnostic and therapeutic modalities, etc.) present opportunities for research that can meet new challenges as they arise.
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Computer aided detection (CADe) of pulmonary nodules from computed tomography (CT) is crucial for early diagnosis of lung cancer. Self-learned features obtained by training datasets via deep learning have facilitated CADe of the nodules. However, the complexity of CT lung images renders a challenge of extracting effective features by self-learning only. This condition is exacerbated for limited size of datasets. On the other hand, the engineered features have been widely studied. OBJECTIVE: We proposed a novel nodule CADe which aims to relieve the challenge by the use of available engineered features to prevent convolution neural networks (CNN)…from overfitting under dataset limitation and reduce the running-time complexity of self-learning. METHODS: The CADe methodology infuses adequately the engineered features, particularly texture features, into the deep learning process. RESULTS: The methodology was validated on 208 patients with at least one juxta-pleural nodule from the public LIDC-IDRI database. Results demonstrated that the methodology achieves a sensitivity of 88% with 1.9 false positives per scan and a sensitivity of 94.01% with 4.01 false positives per scan. CONCLUSIONS: The methodology shows high performance compared with the state-of-the-art results, in terms of accuracy and efficiency, from both existing CNN-based approaches and engineered feature-based classifications.
Keywords: Computer aided detection (CADe), computed tomography (CT) imaging, pulmonary nodules, deep learning, image features analysis
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Improved visualization of lung cancer-associated vessels is vital. OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the efficacy of 3-D quantitative CT in lung cancer-associated pulmonary vessel assessment. METHODS: Vascular CT changes were assessed visually and using FACT-Digital lung TM software (n = 162 patients, 178 controls). The total number of pulmonary vessels (TNV) and mean lumen area of pulmonary vessels (MAV) vertical to cross-sections of fifth/sixth-generation bronchioles were measured. RESULTS: Visual investigation revealed fewer ipsilateral pulmonary vascular abnormalities in lung cancer (151/162) than did quantitative CT (162/162), and required more time (3.2±1.5 vs. 2.5±1.3 min) (P < 0.05). CT…measurements revealed that the TNV vertical to the fifth-generation bronchial cross-section of the ipsilateral, contralateral, and control groups was 14.58±4.75, 9.58±3.74, and 10.22±4.07 and the MAV in these groups was 99.70±26.20, 58.76±29.29, and 57.76±18.32, respectively. The TNV vertical to the sixth-generation bronchial cross-section of the ipsilateral, contralateral, and control groups was 16.64±5.14, 11.59±4.06, and 11.75±4.16 and the MAV was 110.22±31.47, 67.62±30.41, and 60.24±16.18, respectively. The TNV and MAV in ipsilateral lung cancer tissues exceeded those in the contralateral side and control group tissues (P < 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: Automated 3-D quantitative CT could successfully characterize pulmonary vessels and their lung cancer-associated changes.
Keywords: Lung cancer, CT, total number of vessels, mean lumen area of vessels, quantitative measurement
Abstract: In this study, we designed mobile X-ray equipment that generates high-power X-rays, using an internal power source by means of a super-capacitor, and evaluated its safety. The proposed X-ray equipment uses the charging voltage of a battery to store high density energy, supplementing the electric charge of the super-capacitor, which can instantly release a large amount of energy. Further, pulse frequency modulation was applied to produce high voltage and thereby improve energy efficiency. The developed mobile X-ray equipment enables to generate an output of 30 kW and, therefore, can be applied to many diagnostic fields. In addition, various devices and control…circuits were employed to ensure convenience and safety of using the equipment in clinical applications. This study analyzed the error ranges regarding tube voltage, tube current, irradiation time, coefficient variation, half-value layer, and the output characteristics. The results showed that the proposed X-ray equipment was able to generate 80mR X-ray power under the condition of 30 kW. The coefficient variation was less than 0.05 at all measurement points, which indicates that it is possible to generate the equal amount of X-ray when the driving conditions are same. Results also showed 51.25% of transmittance at 3.5mmAL in the case of the wire, which is thicker than a common reference of 2.3mmAL and indicates that this new mobile equipment is possible to generate X-rays with relatively high permeability. In conclusion, the findings in this study suggest that the new equipment can generate consistent high-power X-rays and, therefore, can be used safely by minimizing unnecessary re-taking of images and radiation exposure.
Keywords: Mobile X-ray, super-capacitor, coefficient variation, half-value layer
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Some patients cannot be imaged with cone-beam CT for image-guided radiation therapy because their size, pose, or fixation devices cause collisions with the machine. OBJECTIVE: To investigate imaging trajectories that avoid such collisions by using virtual isocenter and variable magnification during acquisition while yielding comparable image quality. METHODS: The machine components most likely to collide are the gantry and kV detector. A virtual isocenter trajectory continuously moves the patient during gantry rotation to maintain an increased separation between the two. With dynamic magnification, the kV detector is dynamically moved to increase clearance for an angular…range around the potential collision point while acquiring sufficient data to maintain the field-of-view. Both strategies were used independently and jointly with the resultant image quality evaluated against the standard circular acquisition. RESULTS: Collision avoiding trajectories show comparable contrast and resolution to standard techniques. For an anthropomorphic phantom, the RMSE is <7×10- 4 , multi-scale structural similarity index is >0.97, and visual image fidelity is >0.96 for all trajectories when compared to a standard circular scan. CONCLUSIONS: The proposed trajectories avoid machine-patient collisions while providing comparable image quality to the current standard thereby enabling CBCT imaging for patients that could not otherwise be scanned.
Abstract: Performing X-ray computed tomography (CT) examinations with less radiation has recently received increasing interest: in medical imaging this means less (potentially harmful) radiation for the patient; in non-destructive testing of materials/objects such as testing jet engines, the reduction of the number of projection angles (which for large objects is in general high) leads to a substantial decreasing of the experiment time. In the experiment, less radiation is usually achieved by either (1) reducing the radiation dose used at each projection angle or (2) using sparse view X-ray CT, which means significantly less projection angles are used during the examination. In…this work, we study the performance of the recently proposed sinogram-based iterative reconstruction algorithm in sparse view X-ray CT and show that it provides, in some cases, reconstruction accuracy better than that obtained by some of the Total Variation regularization techniques. The provided accuracy is obtained with computation times comparable to other techniques. An important feature of the sinogram-based iterative reconstruction algorithm is that it is simpler and without the many parameters specific to other techniques.
Abstract: BACKGROUND: During the MRI examination, pediatric patients sleep under the sedation so that the image artifacts caused by the patient motion could be minimized. However, the sedative injection at the buttocks might cause a difficulty in the diagnosis of the buttock diseases using the MRI manifestations. OBJECTIVE: This study aims to explore the imaging characteristics of MR for the pediatric patients with the sedative injected at the buttocks in order to correctly diagnose the diseases. METHODS: MR imaging data of 64 pediatric patients injected with the sedative at the buttocks were retrospectively collected, including 8 cases…of buttock disease. The imaging manifestations were analyzed and compared. RESULTS: Out of 64 patients, 8 were diagnosed as the buttock diseases. MR imaging manifestations of the sedatives injected at the buttocks were the locally patchy and streaky long T1 and long T2 signals and were different from what were shown for the normal tissues and diseases. CONCLUSION: The sedative injected at the buttocks has the MRI manifestations different from the normal tissues and diseases. Correctly understanding the MRI manifestations for the pediatric patients with the injection of sedative at the buttocks would reduce the chances of the misdiagnosis on the diseases.
Keywords: Magnetic resonance imaging, sedative, buttocks, pediatric patients
Abstract: We evaluate the impact of denoising and Metal Artefact Reduction (MAR) on 3D object segmentation and classification in low-resolution, cluttered dual-energy Computed Tomography (CT). To this end, we present a novel 3D materials-based segmentation technique based on the Dual-Energy Index (DEI) to automatically generate subvolumes for classification. Subvolume classification is performed using an extension of Extremely Randomised Clustering (ERC) forest codebooks, constructed using dense feature-point sampling and multiscale Density Histogram (DH) descriptors. Within this experimental framework, we evaluate the impact on classification accuracy and computational expense of pre-processing by intensity thresholding, Non-Local Means (NLM) filtering, Linear Interpolation-based MAR (LIMar) and…Distance-Driven MAR (DDMar) in the domain of 3D baggage security screening. We demonstrate that basic NLM filtering, although removing fewer artefacts, produces state-of-the-art classification results comparable to the more complex DDMar but at a significant reduction in computational cost - bringing into question the importance (in terms of automated CT analysis) of computationally expensive artefact reduction techniques. Overall, it was found that the use of MAR pre-processing approaches produced only a marginal improvement in classification performance (< 1%) at considerable additional computational cost (> 10×) when compared to NLM pre-processing.
Abstract: OBJECTIVE: To explore the clinical efficacy and safety of percutaneous transvenous retrieval of intravascular fractured catheter and to evaluate the possible reasons and final results in cancer patients. METHODS: A dataset of 19 patients was used. Percutaneous transvenous retrieval of intravascular fractured catheter was performed in each patients. Clinical data was retrospectively analyzed with respect to the efficacy, safety and outcome, and chest radiography was performed to verify that no catheter fragments were left. RESULTS: Two cases had peripherally inserted central catheter and 17 had subcutaneous implanted port catheter. The catheter fragments were…located in the brachiocephalic vein-superior vena cava (n = 1), superior vena cava (n = 1), superior and inferior vena cava (n = 1), superior vena cava-right atrium (n = 2), brachiocephalic vein-superior vena cava-right atrium (n = 1), superior vena cava-right atrium-right ventricle (n = 6), brachiocephalic vein-superior vena cava-right atrium and right ventricle (n = 1) and pulmonary artery (n = 6), respectively. All of these catheter fragments were retrieved successfully. No complications such as bleeding and thrombosis were found. CONCLUSION: Percutaneous transvenous retrieval is a safe, minimally invasive and relatively simple procedure for the patients with fractured catheter and should be recommended as the first choice.
Abstract: BACKGROUND: High dose efficiency of photon counting detector based spectral CT (PCD-SCT) and its value in some clinical diagnosis have been well acknowledged. However, it has not been widely adopted in practical use for medical diagnosis and security inspection. OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the influence on PCD-SCT from multiple aspects including the number of energy channels, k-edge materials, energy thresholding, basis functions in spectral information decomposition, and the combined optimal setting for these parameters and configurations. METHODS: Basis material decomposition after spatial reconstruction is applied for PCD-SCT. A “one-step” synthesis method, merging decomposition with synthesis, is proposed…to obtain virtual monochromatic images. An I-RMSE is computed using the bias part of I-RMSE to describe the difference of a synthesized signal from ground truth and the standard deviation part of I-RMSE to express the noise level. In addition, virtual monochromatic images commonly used in the medical area are also synthesized. Both numerical simulations and practical experiments are conducted for validation. RESULTS: Results indicated that the I-RMSE for matters significantly reduced with an increased number of energy channels compared with dual-energy channel. The maximum reduction is 6% for triple-, 18% for quadruple-and 24% for quintuple-energy, respectively. However, the improvement is not linear, and also slows down after the number of energy channels reaches a certain number. Contrast agents of high concentration can introduce up to 50% error to surrounding matters. Moreover, different energy partitions influence the total error, which demonstrates the necessity of energy threshold optimization. Last, the optimal basis-material combination varies according to targeted imaging matters and the interested monochromatic energies. CONCLUSIONS: Gain from more energy channels could be significant with the increase of energy channel number. Introduction of contrast agents in scanned objects will increase overall error in spectral CT imaging. Energy thresholding optimization is beneficial for information recovery. Moreover, the choice of basis materials could also be important to obtain low noise results. With these studies of the effect from various configurations for PCD-SCT, one may optimize the configuration of PCD-SCT accordingly.
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Low-quality medical images may influence the accuracy of the machine learning process. OBJECTIVE: This study was undertaken to compare accuracy of medical image classification among machine learning methods, as classification is a basic aspect of clinical image inspection. METHODS: Three types of machine learning methods were used, which include Support Vector Machine (SVM), Artificial Neural Network (ANN), and Convolution Neural Network (CNN). To investigate changes in accuracy related to image quality, we constructed a single dataset using two different file formats of DICOM (Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine) and JPEG (Joint Photographic Experts Group).…RESULTS: The JPEG format contains less color information and data capacity than the DICOM format. CNN classification was accurate for both datasets, whereas SVM and ANN accuracy decreased with the loss of data from DICOM to JPEG formats. CONCLUSIONS: CNN is more accurate than conventional machine learning methods that utilize the manual feature extraction.