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A new dynamic cardiac phantom for emission tomography

Session Poster session III

Speaker Alexander Krakovich

Event : ICNC, Nuclear Cardiology & Cardiac CT 2019

  • Topic : imaging
  • Sub-topic : Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography (SPECT)
  • Session type : Poster Session

Authors : A Krakovich (Tel Aviv,IL), U Zaretsky (Tel Aviv,IL), A Naimushin (Ramat Gan,IL), E Rozen (Ramat Gan,IL), I Moalem (Ramat Gan,IL), M Scheinowitz (Tel Aviv,IL), R Goldkorn (Ramat Gan,IL)

A Krakovich1 , U Zaretsky1 , A Naimushin2 , E Rozen2 , I Moalem2 , M Scheinowitz1 , R Goldkorn2 , 1Tel Aviv University, Biomedical Engineering - Tel Aviv - Israel , 2Sheba Medical Center - Ramat Gan - Israel ,

Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography (SPECT)

Introduction: In recent years, with the advance of non-invasive myocardial blood flow (MBF) measurement capability in dynamic SPECT and PET systems, significant effort has been devoted to validation of the new capability in both phantom and clinical studies. Unfortunately, the phantoms used in the validation process lack some of the essential features of an actual heart (e.g., constant radionuclide concentration or rigid walls with no cardiac beating). Therefore, we have developed a novel cardiac phantom that is able to mimic physiological radionuclide variation in the left ventricle cavity and in the myocardium that generates time-activity curves (TACs) similar to those observed in human patients (which are used for the computation of MBF), while performing beating-like motion. A brief description of the phantom design and experimental results of the phantom with a commercial dynamic SPECT system will be presented.

Methods: Since dynamic SPECT computes the MBF from TACs, it was envisioned that the phantom must mimic physiological TACs. In this case, radionuclide temporal behavior in both the left ventricle cavity (LV) and in the myocardium regions of the phantom should allow rapid increase and decrease of radiotracer concentration in the left ventricle cavity and monotonic increase of radiotracer concentration in the myocardium region. To achieve these goals, the newly designed phantom consists of the following components: (1) Two nested flexible silicon membranes – the internal volume representing the LV and the intermediate volume between both membranes representing the myocardium region surrounding the LV. (2) The dimensions of the membranes resemble the endocardium and epicardium of an actual human heart. (3) Multiple ports for both regions for injection and flushing of radiotracer and saline/water. (4) A large diameter port representing the aorta connected to the base of the LV region, allowing for significant stroke volume at each "cardiac beating" using a pulsatile pump.

Results: Temporal variation of radiotracer concentration in both of the phantom's volumes was obtained by electronically-controlled syringe injectors, typically injecting 0.1-0.5 mCi of 99mTc-SESTAMIBI directly into the phantom. The injection profiles were designed to resemble the TACs observed in human patients: A high-concentration activity bolus arriving into the LV and rapidly dropping after leaving the heart through the aorta, followed by monotonic increase of the tracer concentration until it reaches its final state. A comparison between dynamic SPECT measurements of the phantom and a human patient is shown in the attached figure.

Conclusions: A newly developed cardiac phantom for dynamic SPECT/PET measurements was presented. The phantom is able generate reproducible, reliable results to investigate key parameters of dynamic SPECT/PET systems, namely, the accuracy and reproducibility of TACs and their propagated effect on the computed MBF.

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