Rationale and Objectives: To establish a proof-of-principle for combined assessment of pulmonary ventilation and perfusion using single-energy computed tomography (CT) and image processing/analysis (denoted as single-energy CT ventilation/perfusion imaging). Materials and Methods: Breath-hold CT scans were acquired at end-expiration and end-inspiration before injection of iodinated contrast agents, and repeated at end-inspiration after contrast injection for 17 canines (8 normal and 9 diseased lung subjects). Ventilation images were calculated with deformable image registration to map the end-expiratory and end-inspiratory CT images and quantitative analysis for regional volume changes as surrogates for ventilation. Perfusion images were calculated by subtracting the end-inspiratory precontrast CT from the deformably registered end-inspiratory postcontrast CT, yielding a map of regional Hounsfield unit enhancement as a surrogate for perfusion. Ventilation-perfusion matching, spatial heterogeneity, and gravitationally directed gradients were compared between two groups using a Wilcoxon rank-sum test. Results: The normal group had significantly higher Dice similarity coefficients for spatial overlap of segmented functional volumes between ventilation and perfusion (median 0.40 vs. 0.33, p = 0.05), suggesting stronger ventilation-perfusion matching. The normal group also had greater Spearman's correlation coefficients based on 16 regions of interest (median 0.58 vs. 0.40, p = 0.09). The coefficients of variation were comparable (median, ventilation 0.71 vs. 0.91, p = 0.60; perfusion 0.63 vs. 0.75, p = 0.27). The linear regression slopes of gravitationally directed gradient were also comparable for ventilation (median, ventilation −0.26 vs. −0.18, p = 0.19; perfusion −0.17 vs. −0.06, p = 0.11). Conclusion: These findings provide proof-of-principle for single-energy CT ventilation/perfusion imaging.
- Deformable image registration
- Pulmonary functional imaging
- Single-energy computed tomography (CT)
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging