IJMPCERO  Vol.7 No.4 , November 2018
Feasibility of High Spatial Resolution Working Modes for Clinical PET Scanner
Abstract: Contemporary PET scanners for clinical use have spatial-resolution of 4 - 5 mm, caused by fundamental factors in medical imaging: detector sizes, free path of positrons, and non-colinearity uncertainty of annihilation photon-pairs. The drawback in resolution significantly restrained the sensitivity of PET in imaging small lesions, which could be either early-stage cancers or small metastasis. In this study, the principle for a novel scanning mode to acquire high spatial-resolution images is proposed for clinical PET scanners. The concept of equivalent position was first proposed as different angular orientations of the scanner ring, at which comparable images could be achieved. Due to this concept, a typical static PET scan can be separated into m (m ≥ 2) equivalent sub-scans at different equivalent positions, when the scanner ring is systematically adjusted to m equivalent-positions of equal distance within one detector size. In this case each detector is virtually divided into m equal sub-detectors, without physical minimizing the detector size, and imaging contributions from every 1/m part of the detector can be determined by an analytically matrix, since there are m variables and m sub-scans. This novel concept is quite feasible to contemporary design because the high spatial resolution working modes (m ≥ 2) only demand the scanner to be slightly adjustable to other angular orientations. Adding high spatial resolutions modes to the scanner only has trifling influence on contrast resolutions as all imaging events at each sub-scan are independent. The time for performing a high-resolution scan could be comparable to a typical PET scan, as long as the Poisson noises are insignificant to low-uptake voxels. As a result, for a typical scanner design e.g. 80 cm in diameter with 18F as tracers, the spatial resolution of double sub-scans (m = 2) is 2.56 mm, and 2.19 mm for triple sub-scans (m = 3), which are significant improvements. The novelty of high spatial resolution design is compatible to digital PET or any other technological evolutions.
Cite this paper: Wang, K. (2018) Feasibility of High Spatial Resolution Working Modes for Clinical PET Scanner. International Journal of Medical Physics, Clinical Engineering and Radiation Oncology, 7, 539-552. doi: 10.4236/ijmpcero.2018.74045.

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