MO-DE-207A-10: One-Step CT Reconstruction for Metal Artifact Reduction by a Modification of Penalized Weighted Least-Squares (PWLS)




Metal objects create severe artifacts in kilo-voltage (kV) CT image reconstructions due to the high attenuation coefficients of high atomic number objects. Most of the techniques devised to reduce this artifact utilize a two-step approach, which do not reliably yield the qualified reconstructed images. Thus, for accuracy and simplicity, this work presents a one-step reconstruction method based on a modified penalized weighted least-squares (PWLS) technique.


Existing techniques for metal artifact reduction mostly adopt a two-step approach, which conduct additional reconstruction with the modified projection data from the initial reconstruction. This procedure does not consistently perform well due to the uncertainties in manipulating the metal-contaminated projection data by thresholding and linear interpolation. This study proposes a one-step reconstruction process using a new PWLS operation with total-variation (TV) minimization, while not manipulating the projection. The PWLS for CT reconstruction has been investigated using a pre-defined weight, based on the variance of the projection datum at each detector bin. It works well when reconstructing CT images from metal-free projection data, which does not appropriately penalize metal-contaminated projection data. The proposed work defines the weight at each projection element under the assumption of a Poisson random variable. This small modification using element-wise penalization has a large impact in reducing metal artifacts. For evaluation, the proposed technique was assessed with two noisy, metal-contaminated digital phantoms, against the existing PWLS with TV minimization and the two-step approach.


The proposed PWLS with TV minimization greatly improved the metal artifact reduction, relative to the other techniques, by watching the results. Numerically, the new approach lowered the normalized root-mean-square error about 30 and 60% for the two cases, respectively, compared to the two-step method.


A new PWLS operation shows promise for improving metal artifact reduction in CT imaging, as well as simplifying the reconstructing procedure.