Low concentration contrast medium for dual-source computed tomography coronary angiography by a combination of iterative reconstruction and low-tube-voltage technique: feasibility study

Minwen Zheng, Ying Liu, Mengqi Wei, Yongjie Wu, Hongliang Zhao, Jian Li
European Journal of Radiology 2014, 83 (2): e92-9

OBJECTIVES: To assess the impact of low-concentration contrast medium on vascular enhancement, image quality and radiation dose of coronary CT angiography (cCTA) by using a combination of iterative reconstruction (IR) and low-tube-voltage technique.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: One hundred patients were prospectively randomized to two types of contrast medium and underwent prospective electrocardiogram-triggering cCTA (Definition Flash, Siemens Healthcare; collimation: 128 mm × 0.6mm; tube current: 300 mAs). Fifty patients received Iopromide 370 were scanned using the conventional tube setting (100 kVp or 120 kVp if BMI ≥ 25 kg/m(2)) and reconstructed with filtered back projection (FBP). Fifty patients received Iodixanol 270 were scanned using the low-tube-voltage (80 kVp or 100 kVp if BMI ≥ 25 kg/m(2)) technique and reconstructed with IR. CT attenuation was measured in coronary artery and other anatomical regions. Noise, image quality and radiation dose were compared.

RESULTS: Compared with two Iopromide 370 subgroups, Iomeprol 270 subgroups showed no significant difference in CT attenuation (576.63 ± 95.50 vs. 569.51 ± 118.93 for BMI< 25 kg/m(2), p=0.647 and 394.19 ± 68.09 vs. 383.72 ± 63.11 for BMI ≥ 25 kg/m(2), p=0.212), noise (in various anatomical regions of interest) and image quality (3.5 vs. 4.0, p=0.13), but significantly (0.41 ± 0.17 vs. 0.94 ± 0.45 for BMI< 25 kg/m(2), p<0.001 and 1.14 ± 0.24 vs. 2.37 ± 0.69 for BMI ≥ 25 kg/m(2), p<0.001) lower radiation dose, which reflects dose saving of 56.4% and 51.9%, respectively.

CONCLUSIONS: Combined IR with low-tube-voltage technique, a low-concentration contrast medium of 270 mg I/ml can still maintain the contrast enhancement without impairing image quality, as well as significantly lower the radiation dose.

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