A 3-dimensional absorbed dose calculation method based on quantitative SPECT for radionuclide therapy: Evaluation for 131I using Monte Carlo simulation

Michael Ljungberg, Katarina Sjögreen, Xiaowei Liu, Eric Frey, Yuni Dewaraja, Sven Erik Strand

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A general method is presented for patient-specific 3-dimensional absorbed dose calculations based on quantitative SPECT activity measurements. Methods: The computational scheme includes a method for registration of the CT image to the SPECT image and position-dependent compensation for attenuation, scatter, and collimator detector response performed as part of an iterative reconstruction method. A method for conversion of the measured activity distribution to a 3-dimensional absorbed dose distribution, based on the EGS4 (electron-gamma shower, version 4) Monte Carlo code, is also included. The accuracy of the activity quantification and the absorbed dose calculation is evaluated on the basis of realistic Monte Carlo-simulated SPECT data, using the SIMIND (simulation of imaging nuclear detectors) program and a voxel-based computer phantom. CT images are obtained from the computer phantom, and realistic patient movements are added relative to the SPECT image. The SPECT-based activity concentration and absorbed dose distributions are compared with the true ones. Results: Correction could be made for object scatter, photon attenuation, and scatter penetration in the collimator. However, inaccuracies were imposed by the limited spatial resolution of the SPECT system, for which the collimator response correction did not fully compensate. Conclusion: The presented method includes compensation for most parameters degrading the quantitative image information. The compensation methods are based on physical models and therefore are generally applicable to other radionuclides. The proposed evaluation methodology may be used as a basis for future intercomparison of different methods.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1101-1109
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Nuclear Medicine
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Absorbed dose
  • I
  • Image registration
  • Monte Carlo

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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