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On-site soft-tissue imaging aids radiology procedures

BioPhotonics
Jul 2007
Interventional radiologists use various imaging technologies to help them perform minimally invasive procedures for conditions such as blood clots, uterine fibroids, calcifications and cancer. Some procedures require soft-tissue imaging to help guide needles or catheters into the body. This imaging usually is done with CT scanners; however, they are too large for interventional suites, and patients often must be transported elsewhere for the imaging.

Dr. Constantino Pena of Baptist Cardiac and Vascular Institute in Miami and his colleagues tested an on-site soft-tissue imaging technique to see whether it could be used alongside traditional interventional procedures to detect and evaluate arterial vessel characteristics without sending patients out for separate CT scans.

Clinics-Soft_precoiling.jpg
Investigators have demonstrated that a soft-tissue imaging technique can be used on-site to aid interventional radiology procedures. Shown here is a soft-tissue image of a renal artery aneurysm and its calcified wall.

The XperCT on the Allura Xper FD20 angiography system from Philips Medical Systems provide soft-tissue visualization similar to CT. The system consisted of a rotational C-arm fluoroscopic unit with a flat panel detector that had a field of view of 40 × 30 cm and that could acquire 621 projections at 30 fps during a 205° rotation of the arm. Cone beam reconstruction then yielded a volume of 25 × 25 × 19 cm, which, when converted to voxels (256 × 256 × 198), produced an isotropic resolution of 0.98 × 0.98 × 0.98 mm.

As the researchers presented at the American Roentgen Ray Society’s annual meeting in May in Orlando, Fla., they examined 35 patients with the soft-tissue imaging technique for various vascular and nonvascular interventional procedures. They found that the technique aided with several procedures, including renal and biliary drainage, vertebroplasty, gastrostomy tube placements, direct aneurysm sac punctures and biopsies.

The technique helped them find additional clinical information that aided the various interventional radiology procedures in 80 percent of the patients. They believe that their results indicate that the technique provides quality on-site imaging and is more efficient than the traditional method of sending patients out for separate CT scans.


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