Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10397/16909
Title: Dose optimization in lumbar spine radiographic examination by air gap method at CR and DR systems : a phantom study
Authors: Chan, CTP
Fung, KKL 
Keywords: Air gap
Dose optimization
Lumbar spine
Issue Date: 2015
Publisher: Elsevier Inc.
Source: Journal of medical imaging and radiation sciences, 2015, v. 46, no. 1, p. 65-77 How to cite?
Journal: Journal of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences 
Abstract: Objective: This study aims at investigating the feasibility of replacing an antiscatter grid with an air gap to achieve dose reduction for lumbar spine radiography while retaining image quality at an acceptable diagnostic level. Methods: Frontal and lateral projections of lumbar spine radiographic examinations were performed on an anthropomorphic phantom. Nongrid images of both the computed radiography (CR) and digital radiography (DR) systems with air gap thickness ranging from 0 to 25 cm were produced and compared with their corresponding grid images. Dose measurements using thermoluminescent dosimeters at the ovary and testes regions of the phantom were conducted. The image quality of all the images was evaluated by five radiographers using image quality score and visual grading analysis tests. Data on dose measurements and image quality tests were input for statistical analysis. The dose area product (DAP) of all the examinations was recorded and input for the computation of effective doses using a PC-based Monte Carlo program (PCXMC 2.0; STUK, Helsinki, Finland). Results: Significant dose reduction effects on the ovaries of 60.2%-74.1% and 55.1%-73.3% were found, respectively, at the frontal and lateral projections of nongrid lumbar spine examinations compared with their corresponding grid ones in both the CR and DR systems. Results on the image quality score and visual grading analysis tests showed that nongrid images with 10-cm and 5-cm of air gap thicknesses respective to the frontal and lateral images of the lumbar spine were rated with the highest scores. In general, a dose reduction effect using the air gap method was found to be more pronounced in the CR system compared with the DR system. Nevertheless, the CR system delivered a 2.4-4.5 times higher ovary dose respective to the frontal and lateral projections of lumbar spine examinations compared with the DR system. Conclusions: Ten and 5 centimeters were found to be the optimal air gap thicknesses respective to the frontal and lateral lumbar spine radiographic examinations of the tested Rando phantom (Alderson Laboratories, Stamford, CT) in both the CR and DR systems. Significant dose reduction effects on both the ovary and testes regions of the nongrid examinations were shown. The effective dose computed from PCMCX 2.0 reflected that the risk of cancer induction was halved when an antiscatter grid was replaced by the nongrid method with an optimal air gap thickness in the tested examinations. Further reduction on cancer risk could be achieved by using DR instead of the CR system.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10397/16909
ISSN: 1939-8654
DOI: 10.1016/j.jmir.2014.08.003
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