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Automated volumetry of pulmonary nodules on multidetector CT: influence of slice thickness, reconstruction algorithm and tube current. Preliminary results

Volumetria dei noduli polmonari con metodo automatico in TC multidetettore: influenza dello spessore di strato, dell’algoritmo di ricostruzione e della corrente del tubo. Risultati preliminari

  • Chest Radiology Radiologia Toracica
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To evaluate the influence of slice thickness, reconstruction algorithm and tube current (mA) on the performance of a software package in determining the volume of solid pulmonary nodules on multidetector-row computed tomography (MDCT).

Materials and methods

A chest phantom containing artificial solid nodules with known volume was imaged with two MDCT scans at 100 and 40 mAs (200 mA and 80 mA, 0.5-s rotation time), respectively. Data were reconstructed with slice thicknesses of 1.25 and 2.5 mm and five different algorithms. The volumes of three nodules (juxtavascular, intraparenchymal, juxtapleural) were calculated using three-dimensional (3D) volumetric software. Differences between estimated and real volume were reported for each nodule and reconstruction set.


The software segmented all nodules on 1.25-mmthick reconstructions, independently from the mAs. It did not segment the juxtapleural nodule on 2.5-mm-thick reconstructions at 40 mAs. Mean values of the differences, which better approximated the real volume of the nodules, were obtained with high-spatial-resolution algorithms on both 100 and 40 mAs images at 1.25-mm slice thickness.


Slice thickness, reconstruction algorithm and tube current can affect the 3D volume measurement of solid nodules. The best performance of the software, on both 100 and 40 mAs images, was observed with a slice thickness of 1.25 mm and high-spatial-resolution algorithms.



Valutare l’influenza di spessore di strato, algoritmo di ricostruzione e corrente del tubo (mA) sulla performance di un software nella volumetria dei noduli polmonari solidi in TC multidetettore (TCMD).

Materiali e metodi

Il torace di un fantoccio, contenente noduli solidi artificiali di volume noto, è stato sottoposto a due scansioni TCMD, rispettivamente a 100 e 40 mAs (200 mA e 80 mA, tempo di rotazione di 0,5 s). I dati sono stati ricostruiti con spessori di strato di 1,25 e 2,5 mm e cinque differenti algoritmi. È stato calcolato il volume di tre noduli (iuxtavascolare, centroparenchimale, iuxtapleurico) con software tridimensionale (3D) e riportate le differenze tra volume stimato e reale, per ciascun nodulo e ricostruzione.


Il software ha segmentato tutti i noduli nelle ricostruzioni a spessore di strato di 1,25 mm, indipendentemente dai mAs. Non ha segmentato il nodulo iuxtapleurico a 2,5 mm e a 40 mAs. I kernel ad alta risoluzione spaziale hanno fornito valori medi di differenze dei volumi più prossimi al volume reale dei noduli nelle ricostruzioni a 1,25 mm, sia a 100 che a 40 mAs.


Spessore di strato, algoritmo di ricostruzione e corrente del tubo possono influenzare la volumetria 3D dei noduli solidi. Lo spessore di 1,25 mm e gli algoritmi ad alta risoluzione hanno consentito la migliore performance del software, sia a 100 che a 40 mAs.

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Correspondence to A. R. Larici.

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Larici, A.R., Storto, M.L., Torge, M. et al. Automated volumetry of pulmonary nodules on multidetector CT: influence of slice thickness, reconstruction algorithm and tube current. Preliminary results. Radiol med 113, 29–42 (2008).

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