Posterior fossa artifacts constitute a characteristic limitation of cranial CT. To identify practical benefits and drawbacks of newer CT systems with reduced collimation in routine cranial imaging, we aimed to investigate image quality, posterior fossa artifacts and parenchymal delineation in non-enhanced CT (NECT) with 1-, 4-, 16- and 64-slice scanners using standard scan protocols. We prospectively enrolled 25 consecutive patients undergoing NECT on a 64-slice CT. Three groups with 25 patients having undergone NECT on 1-, 4- and 16-slice CT machines were matched regarding age and sex. Standard routine CT parameters were used on each CT system with helical acquisition in the posterior fossa; the parameters varied regarding collimation and radiation dose. Three blinded readers independently assessed the cases regarding image quality, infra- and supratentorial artifacts and delineation of brain parenchymal structures on a five-point ordinal scale. Reading orders were randomized. A proportional odds model that accounted for the correlated nature of the data was fit using generalized estimating equations. Posterior fossa artifacts were significantly reduced, and the delineation of infratentorial brain structures was significantly improved with the thinner collimation used for the newer CT systems (p<0.001). No significant differences were observed for midbrain structures (p>0.5). The thinner collimation available on modern CT systems leads to reduced posterior fossa artifacts and to a better delineation of brain parenchyma in the posterior fossa.
View details for DOI 10.1007/s00330-008-0937-6
View details for Web of Science ID 000257440700023
View details for PubMedID 18389247