In this work singular value decomposition (SVD) techniques are used to investigate how the use of low energy photons and multiple energy windows affects the noise properties of Tc-99m SPECT imaging. We have previously shown that, when modeling scatter in the projector and backprojector of iterative reconstruction algorithms, simultaneous reconstruction from multiple energy window data can result in very different noise characteristics. Further, the properties depend upon the width and number of energy windows used. To investigate this further, we have generated photon transport matrices using models for scatter, an elliptical phantom containing cold rods of various sizes, and a number of multiple energy window acquisition schemes. Transfer matrices were also generated for the cases of perfect scatter rejection and ideal scatter subtraction. The matrices were decomposed using SVD, and signal power and projection space variance spectra were computed using the basis formed by the left singular vectors. Results indicate very different noise levels for the various energy window combinations. The perfect scatter rejection case resulted in the lowest variance spectrum, and reconstruction-based scatter compensation performed better than the scatter subtraction case. When including lower energy photons in reconstruction-based scatter compensation, using a series of multiple energy windows outperformed a single large energy window. One multiple window combination is presented which achieves a lower variance spectrum than the standard 20% energy window, indicating the potential for using low energy photons to improve the noise characteristics of SPECT images.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Nuclear and High Energy Physics
- Nuclear Energy and Engineering
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering