Technical Notes| Volume 7, ISSUE 4, P215-222, July 2013

Coronary artery stent imaging with CT using an integrated electronics detector and iterative reconstructions: First in vitro experience

Published:August 26, 2013DOI:



      Despite continuous improvements in CT technology, accurate stent lumen delineation remains challenging.


      The aim was to evaluate the quality of coronary stent lumen delineation with CT using a detector with integrated electronics.


      Twelve coronary stents placed in plastic tubes and filled with contrast agent (CT number 250 HU) were imaged with either a 128-section dual-source CT machine equipped with conventional detector or with integrated electronics. On both scanners, images were reconstructed with filtered back projection (slice thickness 0.6 mm; increment 0.4 mm) and sinogram-affirmed iterative reconstruction (slice thickness 0.6 mm; increment 0.4 mm), and with iterative reconstruction (slice thickness 0.5 mm; increment 0.3 mm) on the integrated scanner. Two blinded, independent readers assessed image quality, noise, in-stent diameter, in-stent attenuation, and image sharpness by using signal intensity profiles across stents.


      Interreader agreement for image quality assessment was substantial (κ = 0.798). Both readers rated best image quality in data sets from integrated detector at highest spatial resolution (86 or 72% of stents rated best quality). Image noise was significantly lower in data sets scanned with integrated detector, being lowest at 0.6 mm slice thickness (14.3 vs 21.0 HU; P < .001). Differences between measured and true in-stent diameters and differences in attenuation across stents were smallest, and average/maximum image sharpness was highest in data sets from the integrated detector using iterative reconstructions.


      CT coronary stent imaging is significantly improved by using a detector with integrated electronics combined with iterative reconstructions.


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