MO-DE-207A-09: Low-Dose CT Image Reconstruction Via Learning From Different Patient Normal-Dose Images




To investigate a novel low-dose CT (LdCT) image reconstruction strategy for lung CT imaging in radiation therapy.


The proposed approach consists of four steps: (1) use the traditional filtered back-projection (FBP) method to reconstruct the LdCT image; (2) calculate structure similarity (SSIM) index between the FBP-reconstructed LdCT image and a set of normal-dose CT (NdCT) images, and select the NdCT image with the highest SSIM as the learning source; (3) segment the NdCT source image into lung and outside tissue regions via simple thresholding, and adopt multiple linear regression to learn high-order Markov random field (MRF) pattern for each tissue region in the NdCT source image; (4) segment the FBP-reconstructed LdCT image into lung and outside regions as well, and apply the learnt MRF prior in each tissue region for statistical iterative reconstruction of the LdCT image following the penalized weighted least squares (PWLS) framework. Quantitative evaluation of the reconstructed images was based on the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR), local binary pattern (LBP) and histogram of oriented gradients (HOG) metrics.


It was observed that lung and outside tissue regions have different MRF patterns predicted from the NdCT. Visual inspection showed that our method obviously outperformed the traditional FBP method. Comparing with the region-smoothing PWLS method, our method has, in average, 13% increase in SNR, 15% decrease in LBP difference, and 12% decrease in HOG difference from reference standard for all regions of interest, which indicated the superior performance of the proposed method in terms of image resolution and texture preservation.


We proposed a novel LdCT image reconstruction method by learning similar image characteristics from a set of NdCT images, and the to-be-learnt NdCT image does not need to be scans from the same subject. This approach is particularly important for enhancing image quality in radiation therapy.