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Coronary artery calcium quantification from contrast enhanced CT using gemstone spectral imaging and material decomposition.

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Original article (peer-reviewed)
Publication date 2014
Author Fuchs Tobias A, Stehli Julia, Dougoud Svetlana, Sah Bert-Ram, Bull Sacha, Clerc Olivier F, Possner Mathias, Buechel Ronny R, Gaemperli Oliver, Kaufmann Philipp A,
Project Entwicklung einer neuen Hybrid-Bildgebungs-Methode zur nicht invasiven kardialen Diagnostik
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Original article (peer-reviewed)

Journal The international journal of cardiovascular imaging
Volume (Issue) 30(7)
Page(s) 1399 - 405
Title of proceedings The international journal of cardiovascular imaging
DOI 10.1007/s10554-014-0474-0


To explore the feasibility of coronary artery calcium (CAC) measurement from low-dose contrast enhanced coronary CT angiography (CCTA) as this may obviate the need for an unenhanced CT scan. 52 patients underwent unenhanced cardiac CT and prospectively ECG triggered contrast enhanced CCTA (Discovery HD 750, GE Healthcare, Milwaukee, WI, USA). The latter was acquired in single-source dual-energy mode [gemstone spectral imaging (GSI)]. Virtual unenhanced images were generated from GSI CCTA by monochromatic image reconstruction of 70 keV allowing selective iodine material suppression. CAC scores from virtual unenhanced CT were compared to standard unenhanced CT including a linear regression model. After iodine subtraction from the contrast enhanced CCTA the attenuation in the ascending aorta decreased significantly from 359 ± 61 to 54 ± 8 HU (P < 0.001), the latter comparing well to the value of 64 ± 55 HU found in the standard unenhanced CT (P = ns) confirming successful iodine subtraction. After introducing linear regression formula the mean values for Agatston, Volume and Mass scores of virtual unenhanced CT were 187 ± 321, 72 ± 114 mm(3), and 27 ± 46 mg/cm(3), comparing well to the values from standard unenhanced CT (187 ± 309, 72 ± 110 mm(3), and 27 ± 45 mg/cm(3)) yielding an excellent correlation (r = 0.96, r = 0.96, r = 0.92; P < 0.001). Mean estimated radiation dose revealed 0.83 ± 0.02 mSv from the unenhanced CT and 1.70 ± 0.53 mSv from the contrast enhanced CCTA. Single-source dual-energy scanning with GSI allows CAC quantification from low dose contrast enhanced CCTA by virtual iodine contrast subtraction.