Design and characterization of a dedicated cone-beam CT scanner for detection of acute intracranial hemorrhage

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Purpose: Prompt and reliable detection of intracranial hemorrhage (ICH) has substantial clinical impact in diagnosis and treatment of stroke and traumatic brain injury. This paper describes the design, development, and preliminary performance characterization of a dedicated cone-beam CT (CBCT) head scanner prototype for imaging of acute ICH. Methods: A task-based image quality model was used to analyze the detectability index as a function of system configuration, and hardware design was guided by the results of this model-based optimization. A robust artifact correction pipeline was developed using GPU-accelerated Monte Carlo (MC) scatter simulation, beam hardening corrections, detector veiling glare, and lag deconvolution. An iterative penalized weighted least-squares (PWLS) reconstruction framework with weights adjusted for artifact-corrected projections was developed. Various bowtie filters were investigated for potential dose and image quality benefits, with a MC-based tool providing estimates of spatial dose distribution. Results: The initial prototype will feature a source-detector distance of 1000 mm and source-axis distance of 550 mm, a 43x43 cm2 flat panel detector, and a 15° rotating anode x-ray source with 15 kW power and 0.6 focal spot size. Artifact correction reduced image nonuniformity by ∼250 HU, and PWLS reconstruction with modified weights improved the contrast to noise ratio by 20%. Inclusion of a bowtie filter can potentially reduce dose by 50% and improve CNR by 25%. Conclusions: A dedicated CBCT system capable of imaging millimeter-scale acute ICH was designed. Preliminary findings support feasibility of point-of-care applications in TBI and stroke imaging, with clinical studies beginning on a prototype.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationMedical Imaging 2016: Physics of Medical Imaging
ISBN (Electronic)9781510600188
StatePublished - 2016
EventMedical Imaging 2016: Physics of Medical Imaging - San Diego, United States
Duration: Feb 28 2016Mar 2 2016


OtherMedical Imaging 2016: Physics of Medical Imaging
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego


  • Cone-Beam CT
  • intracranial hemorrhage
  • system design
  • task based detectability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Biomaterials
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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