Detecting small anatomical change with 3D serial MR subtraction images

from: Proc Society of Photo-Optical Instrument Engineers (SPIE), Bellingham, WA, vol 3661, pp 44-55, (February, 1999)

M. Holden, E. R. E. Denton, J. M. Jarosz, T. C. S. Cox, D. J. Hawkes and D. L. G. Hill

Radiological Sciences, GKT, Guy's Hospital, London, SE1 9RT, UK.



Spoiled gradient echo volume MR scans were obtained from 5 growth hormone (GH) patients and 6 normal controls. The patients were scanned before treatment and after 3 and 6 months of GH therapy. The controls were scanned at similar intervals. A calibration phantom was scanned on the same day as each subject. The phantom images were registered with a 9 degree of freedom algorithm to measure scaling errors due to changes in scanner calibration. The second and third images were each registered with a 6 degree of freedom algorithm to the first (baseline) image by maximising normalised mutual information, and transformed, with and without scaling error correction, using sinc interpolation. Each registered and transformed image had the baseline image subtracted to generate a difference image. Two neuro-radiologists were trained to detect structural change with difference images containing synthetic misregistration and scale changes. They carried out a blinded assessment of anatomical change for the unregistered; aligned and subtracted; and scale corrected, aligned and subtracted images. The results show a significant improvement in the detection of structural change and inter-observer agreement when aligned and subtracted images were used instead of unregistered ones. The structural change corresponded to an increase in brain:CSF ratio.

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    Mark Holden Radiological Sciences.
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