Technical factors of CT angiography studied with a carotid artery phantom

Scott W. Wise, Kenneth D. Hopper, Todd A. Schwartz, Thomas R. Ten Have, Claudia J. Kasales

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


PURPOSE: To evaluate scanning parameters (conventional versus spiral CT, section thickness, and pitch) and vessel orientation in the performance of CT angiography. METHODS: Conventional CT and 1.0-, 1.5-, and 2.0-pitch spiral CT acquisitions of a carotid phantom designed with vessels oriented parallel to the z-axis, 45°oblique, and perpendicular to the z-axis were obtained with section thicknesses of 2, 4, and 8 mm. The phantom contained 32 vessels with 0% to 100% stenoses. Normal and stenotic luminal diameters were measured and the number of artifacts was assessed. RESULTS: No overall difference was observed among conventional and spiral CT acquisitions obtained with pitches of 1.0, 1.5, and 2.0. With thicker sections, CT angiographic accuracy decreased and artifacts increased. The three-vessel orientations were relatively comparable in accuracy in terms of the percentage of stenosis measured. Vessels parallel to the z-axis suffered less artifactual degradation. Unique artifacts, such as luminal distortion and beam hardening, were observed in vessels oriented at 45°and perpendicular to the z-axis. CONCLUSION: Use of thinner sections with vessels oriented parallel to the z- axis optimizes CT angiographic quality. There is no apparent degradation with the use of spiral CT, and a pitch of 1.5 or 2.0 provides results equivalent to 1.0-pitch spiral studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)401-408
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Neuroradiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 1997

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Clinical Neurology


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