Journal of Medical Physics
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Year : 2010  |  Volume : 35  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 223-228

Automatic and manual image fusion of 111 In-pentetreotide SPECT and diagnostic CT in neuroendocrine tumor imaging - An evaluation

1 Medical Imaging, School of Health Sciences, Jönköping University, Jönköping, Sweden
2 Medical Imaging, School of Health Sciences, Jönköping University; Department of Clinical Physiology, County Hospital Ryhov, Jönköping, Sweden
3 Hospital Physics Unit, Department of Oncology, County Hospital Ryhov, Jönköping, Sweden

Correspondence Address:
Elisabeth Hedlund
Uppsala University Hospital Sweden, Nuclear Medicine Uppsala, 75185 Sweden

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0971-6203.71766

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In the clinical diagnosis of neuroendocrine tumors (NET), the results of examinations, such as high-resolution computed tomography (CT) and single photon computerized tomography (SPECT), have conventionally been interpreted separately. The aim of the present study was to evaluate Hermes Multimodality™ 5.0 H Image Fusion software-based automatic and manual image fusion of SPECT and CT for the localization of NET lesions. Out of 34 NET patients who were examined by means of somatostatin receptor scintigraphy (SRS) with 111In- pentetreotide along with SPECT, 22 patients had a CT examination of the abdomen, which was used in the fusion analysis. SPECT and CT data were fused using software with a registration algorithm based on normalized mutual information. The criteria for acceptable fusion were established at a maximum cranial or caudal dislocation of 25 mm between the images and at a reasonable consensus (in order of less than 1 cm) between outline of the reference organs. The automatic fusion was acceptable in 13 of the 22 examinations, whereas 9 fusions were not. However all the 22 examinations were acceptable at the manual fusion. The result of automatic fusion was better when the slice thickness of 5 mm was applied at CT examination, when the number of slices was below 100 in CT data and when both examinations included uptakes of pathological lesions. Retrospective manual image fusion of SPECT and CT is a relatively inexpensive but reliable method to be used in NET imaging. Automatic image fusion with specified software of SPECT and CT acts better when the number of CT slices is reduced to the SPECT volume and when corresponding pathological lesions appear at both SPECT and CT examinations.

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