Construction of realistic liver phantoms from patient images using 3D printer and its application in CT image quality assessment

Shuai Leng, Lifeng Yu, Thomas Vrieze, Joel Kuhlmann, Baiyu Chen, Cynthia H McCollough

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

The purpose of this study is to use 3D printing techniques to construct a realistic liver phantom with heterogeneous background and anatomic structures from patient CT images, and to use the phantom to assess image quality with filtered back-projection and iterative reconstruction algorithms. Patient CT images were segmented into liver tissues, contrast-enhanced vessels, and liver lesions using commercial software, based on which stereolithography (STL) files were created and sent to a commercial 3D printer. A 3D liver phantom was printed after assigning different printing materials to each object to simulate appropriate attenuation of each segmented object. As high opacity materials are not available for the printer, we printed hollow vessels and filled them with iodine solutions of adjusted concentration to represent enhance levels in contrast-enhanced liver scans. The printed phantom was then placed in a 35×26 cm oblong-shaped water phantom and scanned repeatedly at 4 dose levels. Images were reconstructed using standard filtered back-projection and an iterative reconstruction algorithm with 3 different strength settings. Heterogeneous liver background were observed from the CT images and the difference in CT numbers between lesions and background were representative for low contrast lesions in liver CT studies. CT numbers in vessels filled with iodine solutions represented the enhancement of liver arteries and veins. Images were run through a Channelized Hotelling model observer with Garbor channels and ROC analysis was performed. The AUC values showed performance improvement using the iterative reconstruction algorithm and the amount of improvement increased with strength setting.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProgress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging - Proceedings of SPIE
PublisherSPIE
Volume9412
ISBN (Print)9781628415025
DOIs
StatePublished - 2015
EventMedical Imaging 2015: Physics of Medical Imaging - Orlando, United States
Duration: Feb 22 2015Feb 25 2015

Other

OtherMedical Imaging 2015: Physics of Medical Imaging
CountryUnited States
CityOrlando
Period2/22/152/25/15

Keywords

  • 3D printing
  • Channelized hotelling observer
  • Heterogeneous background
  • Lesion detection
  • Model observer
  • Phantoms

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Biomaterials
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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  • Cite this

    Leng, S., Yu, L., Vrieze, T., Kuhlmann, J., Chen, B., & McCollough, C. H. (2015). Construction of realistic liver phantoms from patient images using 3D printer and its application in CT image quality assessment. In Progress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging - Proceedings of SPIE (Vol. 9412). [94124E] SPIE. https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2082121