Current four-dimensional computed tomography (4-D CT) lung image reconstruction methods rely on respiratory gating, such as surrogate, to sort the large number of axial images captured during multiple breathing cycles into serial three-dimensional CT images of different respiratory phases. Such sorting methods may be subject to external surrogate signal noises due to poor reproducibility of breathing cycles. New image-matching-based reconstruction algorithms refine the 4-D CT reconstruction by matching neighboring image slices, and they generally work better for the cine mode of 4-D CT acquisition than the helical mode due to different table positions of axial images in the helical mode. We propose a Bayesian model (BM) based automated 4-D CT lung image reconstruction for helical mode scans. BM allows for applying new spatial and temporal anatomical constraints in the optimization procedure. Using an iterative optimization procedure, each axial image is assigned to a respiratory phase to make sure the anatomical structures are spatially and temporally smooth based on the BM framework. In experiments, we visually and quantitatively compared the results of the proposed BM-based 4-D CT reconstruction with the respiratory surrogate and the normalized cross-correlation based image matching method using both simulated and actual 4-D patient scans. The results indicated that the proposed algorithm yielded more accurate reconstruction and fewer artifacts in the 4-D CT image series.
- Bayesian model
- chest imaging
- four-dimensional computed tomography reconstruction
- respiratory motion