Journal of Medical Physics
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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2011  |  Volume : 36  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 22-28

Initial quality performance results using a phantom to simulate chest computed radiography


1 Department of Physics, University of Dar es Salaam, P.O Box 35063, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, Italy
2 Fisica Sanitaria, Ospedale Universitario, P.le Santa Maria della Misericordia 15, 33100, Udine, Italy

Correspondence Address:
Wilbroad Muhogora
Department of Physics, University of Dar es Salaam, P. O. Box 35063 Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Italy
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0971-6203.75468

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The aim of this study was to develop a homemade phantom for quantitative quality control in chest computed radiography (CR). The phantom was constructed from copper, aluminium, and polymenthylmethacrylate (PMMA) plates as well as Styrofoam materials. Depending on combinations, the literature suggests that these materials can simulate the attenuation and scattering characteristics of lung, heart, and mediastinum. The lung, heart, and mediastinum regions were simulated by 10 mm x 10 mm x 0.5 mm, 10 mm x 10 mm x 0.5 mm and 10 mm x 10 mm x 1 mm copper plates, respectively. A test object of 100 mm x 100 mm and 0.2 mm thick copper was positioned to each region for CNR measurements. The phantom was exposed to x-rays generated by different tube potentials that covered settings in clinical use: 110-120 kVp (HVL=4.26-4.66 mm Al) at a source image distance (SID) of 180 cm. An approach similar to the recommended method in digital mammography was applied to determine the CNR values of phantom images produced by a Kodak CR 850A system with post-processing turned off. Subjective contrast-detail studies were also carried out by using images of Leeds TOR CDR test object acquired under similar exposure conditions as during CNR measurements. For clinical kVp conditions relevant to chest radiography, the CNR was highest over 90-100 kVp range. The CNR data correlated with the results of contrast detail observations. The values of clinical tube potentials at which CNR is the highest are regarded to be optimal kVp settings. The simplicity in phantom construction can offer easy implementation of related quality control program.


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