Date: 09 Oct 2012

PET–MR imaging using a tri-modality PET/CT–MR system with a dedicated shuttle in clinical routine

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Tri-modality PET/CT–MRI includes the transfer of the patient on a dedicated shuttle from one system into the other. Advantages of this system include a true CT-based attenuation correction, reliable PET-quantification and higher flexibility in patient throughput on both systems. Comparative studies of PET/MRI versus PET/CT are readily accomplished without repeated PET with a different PET scanner at a different time point. Additionally, there is a higher imaging flexibility based on the availability of three imaging modalities, which can be combined for the characterization of the disease. The downside is a somewhat higher radiation dose of up to 3 mSv with a low dose CT based on the CT-component, longer acquisition times and potential misalignment between the imaging components. Overall, the tri-modality PET/CT–MR system offers comparative studies using the three different imaging modalities in the same patient virtually at the same time, and may help to develop reliable attenuation algorithms at the same time.