WE-D-303-00: Computational Phantoms



Modern medical physics deals with complex problems such as 4D radiation therapy and imaging quality optimization. Such problems involve a large number of radiological parameters, and anatomical and physiological breathing patterns. A major challenge is how to develop, test, evaluate and compare various new imaging and treatment techniques, which often involves testing over a large range of radiological parameters as well as varying patient anatomies and motions. It would be extremely challenging, if not impossible, both ethically and practically, to test every combination of parameters and every task on every type of patient under clinical conditions. Computer-based simulation using computational phantoms offers a practical technique with which to evaluate, optimize, and compare imaging technologies and methods. Within simulation, the computerized phantom provides a virtual model of the patient's anatomy and physiology. Imaging data can be generated from it as if it was a live patient using accurate models of the physics of the imaging and treatment process. With sophisticated simulation algorithms, it is possible to perform virtual experiments entirely on the computer. By serving as virtual patients, computational phantoms hold great promise in solving some of the most complex problems in modern medical physics. In this proposed symposium, we will present the history and recent developments of computational phantom models, share experiences in their application to advanced imaging and radiation applications, and discuss their promises and limitations.

Learning Objectives:

  • 1.Understand the need and requirements of computational phantoms in medical physics research
  • 2.Discuss the developments and applications of computational phantoms
  • 3.Know the promises and limitations of computational phantoms in solving complex problems