Typical streak artifacts known as metal artifacts occur in the presence of strongly attenuating materials in computed tomography (CT). Recently, vendors have started offering metal artifact reduction (MAR) techniques. In addition, a MAR technique called the metal deletion technique (MDT) is freely available and able to reduce metal artifacts using reconstructed images. Although a comparison of the MDT to other MAR techniques exists, a comparison of commercially available MAR techniques is lacking. The aim of this study was therefore to quantify the difference in effectiveness of the currently available MAR techniques of different scanners and the MDT technique.
Materials and Methods
Three vendors were asked to use their preferential CT scanner for applying their MAR techniques. The scans were performed on a Philips Brilliance ICT 256 (S1), a GE Discovery CT 750 HD (S2) and a Siemens Somatom Definition AS Open (S3). The scans were made using an anthropomorphic head and neck phantom (Kyoto Kagaku, Japan). Three amalgam dental implants were constructed and inserted between the phantom's teeth. The average absolute error (AAE) was calculated for all reconstructions in the proximity of the amalgam implants.
The commercial techniques reduced the AAE by 22.0 +/- 1.6%, 16.2 +/- 2.6% and 3.3 +/- 0.7% for S1 to S3 respectively. After applying the MDT to uncorrected scans of each scanner the AAE was reduced by 26.1 +/- 2.3%, 27.9 +/- 1.0% and 28.8 +/- 0.5% respectively. The difference in efficiency between the commercial techniques and the MDT was statistically significant for S2 (p = 0.004) and S3 (p <0.001), but not for S1 (p = 0.63).
The effectiveness of MAR differs between vendors. S1 performed slightly better than S2 and both performed better than S3. Furthermore, for our phantom and outcome measure the MDT was more effective than the commercial MAR technique on all scanners.
Data from: Quantitative comparison of commercial and non-commercial metal artifact reduction techniques in computed tomography