Objective: To retrospectively compare radiation dose and image quality of pediatric chest CT using a routine dose protocol reconstructed with filtered back projection (FBP) (the Routine study) and a low-dose protocol with 50% adaptive statistical iterative reconstruction (ASIR) (the ASIR study). Materials and methods: We retrospectively reviewed chest CT performed in pediatric patients who underwent both the Routine study and the ASIR study on different days between January 2010 and August 2011. Volume CT dose indices (CTDIvol), dose length products (DLP), and effective doses were obtained to estimate radiation dose. The image quality was evaluated objectively as noise measured in the descending aorta and paraspinal muscle, and subjectively by three radiologists for noise, sharpness, artifacts, and diagnostic acceptability using a four-point scale. The paired Student's t-test and the Wilcoxon signed-rank test were used for statistical analysis. Results: Twenty-six patients (M:F = 13:13, mean age 11.7) were enrolled. The ASIR studies showed 60.3%, 56.2%, and 55.2% reductions in CTDIvol (from 18.73 to 7.43 mGy, P < 0.001), DLP (from 307.42 to 134.51 mGy × cm, P < 0.001), and effective dose (from 4.12 to 1.84 mSv, P < 0.001), respectively, compared with the Routine studies. The objective noise was higher in the paraspinal muscle of the ASIR studies (20.81 vs. 16.67, P = 0.004), but was not different in the aorta (18.23 vs. 18.72, P = 0.726). The subjective image quality demonstrated no difference between the two studies. Conclusion: A low-dose protocol with 50% ASIR allows radiation dose reduction in pediatric chest CT by more than 55% while maintaining image quality.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging