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Med Phys. 1992 Jul-Aug;19(4):1105-12.

The effect of intrinsic attenuation correction methods on the stationarity of the 3-D modulation transfer function of SPECT.

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Department of Nuclear Medicine, University of Massachusetts Medical Center, Worcester 01655.


The application of stationary restoration techniques to SPECT images assumes that the modulation transfer function (MTF) of the imaging system is shift invariant. It was hypothesized that using intrinsic attenuation correction (i.e., methods which explicitly invert the exponential radon transform) would yield a three-dimensional (3-D) MTF which varies less with position within the transverse slices than the combined conjugate view two-dimensional (2-D) MTF varies with depth. Thus the assumption of shift invariance would become less of an approximation for 3-D post- than for 2-D pre-reconstruction restoration filtering. SPECT acquisitions were obtained from point sources located at various positions in three differently shaped, water-filled phantoms. The data were reconstructed with intrinsic attenuation correction, and 3-D MTFs were calculated. Four different intrinsic attenuation correction methods were compared: (1) exponentially weighted backprojection, (2) a modified exponentially weighted backprojection as described by Tanaka et al. [Phys. Med. Biol. 29, 1489-1500 (1984)], (3) a Fourier domain technique as described by Bellini et al. [IEEE Trans. ASSP 27, 213-218 (1979)], and (4) the circular harmonic transform (CHT) method as described by Hawkins et al. [IEEE Trans. Med. Imag. 7, 135-148 (1988)]. The dependence of the 3-D MTF obtained with these methods, on point source location within an attenuator, and on shape of the attenuator, was studied. These 3-D MTFs were compared to: (1) those MTFs obtained with no attenuation correction, and (2) the depth dependence of the arithmetic mean combined conjugate view 2-D MTFs.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS).

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