A novel method for digital X-ray imaging of the complete spine
One of the practical reasons for applying film-cassettes instead of digitized video images, is that for some applications the entrance plane of the Image Intensifier is too small to cover the relevant part of a patients anatomy in one single exposure. Imaging of the deformed spine is such an application.
We use standard digital X-ray equipment to acquire a number of images with smaller Field Of View (FOV) and translated along the path of the spine. Together these images will cover the complete spine. A special algorithm is developed to paste these images together to form an overview of the complete spine.
The proposed acquisition protocol in combination with the presented overview reconstruction method offers a lot of advantages. Modern standard digital X-ray equipment can be used. The required X-ray dose is lower than for conventional radiographs, while image quality is better. Computer assisted measurements can be performed on these overview images with accurate results).
The standard in orthopedics for quantifying the degree of scoliosis, is measuring Cobb's Angle. We investigated the influence of our overview reconstruction technique on this measurement and compared this influence with other error sources which play a role in conventional film based technique as well as in our digital technique.
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