3 years ago

System geometry optimization for molecular breast tomosynthesis with focusing multi-pinhole collimators.

van Roosmalen, Beekman, Goorden
Imaging of Tc-99m labelled tracers is gaining popularity for detecting breast tumours. Recently, we proposed a novel design for molecular breast tomosynthesis (MBT) based on two sliding focusing multi-pinhole collimators that scan a modestly compressed breast. Simulation studies indicate that MBT has the potential to improve the tumour-to-background contrast-to-noise ratio significantly over state-of-the-art planar molecular breast imaging. The aim of the present paper is to optimize the collimator-detector geometry of MBT. Using analytical models, we first optimized sensitivity at different fixed system resolutions (ranging from 5 to 12 mm) by tuning the pinhole diameters and the distance between breast and detector for a whole series of automatically generated multi-pinhole designs. We evaluated both MBT with a conventional continuous crystal detector with 3.2 mm intrinsic resolution and with a pixelated detector with 1.6 mm pixels. Subsequently, full system simulations of a breast phantom containing several lesions were performed for the optimized geometry at each system resolution for both types of detector. From these simulations, we found that tumour-to-background contrast-to-noise ratio was highest for systems in the 7 mm to 10 mm system resolution range over which it hardly varied. No significant differences between the two detector types were found.

Publisher URL: http://doi.org/10.1088/1361-6560/aa9265

DOI: 10.1088/1361-6560/aa9265

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