Evaluation of the OSC-TV iterative reconstruction algorithm for cone-beam optical CT
The present work evaluates an iterative reconstruction approach, namely, the ordered subsets convex (OSC) algorithm with regularization via total variation (TV) minimization in the field of cone-beam optical computed tomography (optical CT). One of the uses of optical CT is gel-based 3D dosimetry for radiation therapy, where it is employed to map dose distributions in radiosensitive gels. Model-based iterative reconstruction may improve optical CT image quality and contribute to a wider use of optical CT in clinical gel dosimetry.
This algorithm was evaluated using experimental data acquired by a cone-beam optical CT system, as well as complementary numerical simulations. A fast GPU implementation of OSC-TV was used to achieve reconstruction times comparable to those of conventional filtered backprojection. Images obtained via OSC-TV were compared with the corresponding filtered backprojections. Spatial resolution and uniformity phantoms were scanned and respective reconstructions were subject to evaluation of the modulation transfer function, image uniformity, and accuracy. The artifacts due to refraction and total signal loss from opaque objects were also studied.
The cone-beam optical CT data reconstructions showed that OSC-TV outperforms filtered backprojection in terms of image quality, thanks to a model-based simulation of the photon attenuation process. It was shown to significantly improve the image spatial resolution and reduce image noise. The accuracy of the estimation of linear attenuation coefficients remained similar to that obtained via filtered backprojection. Certain image artifacts due to opaque objects were reduced. Nevertheless, the common artifact due to the gel container walls could not be eliminated.
The use of iterative reconstruction improves cone-beam optical CT image quality in many ways. The comparisons between OSC-TV and filtered backprojection presented in this paper demonstrate that OSC-TV can potentially improve the rendering of spatial features and reduce cone-beam optical CT artifacts.