Toshiba Expands CT Radiology Line

Target CTA and Adaptive Iterative Dose Reduction improve image quality while minimizing radiation dose.
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Toshiba America Medical Systems is expanding its suite of low-dose computed tomography (CT) technologies with Target CTA and Adaptive Iterative Dose Reduction (AIDR), which will be showcased this week at the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) annual meeting in Chicago.

Target CTA is a cardiac protocol for the Aquilion ONE CT technology that can image a pediatric or adult patient's entire heart in one rotation. Target CTA allows for more accurate targeting of the heart, minimizes padding of the scan range, and can limit the radiation dose during gated cardiac studies.

Adaptive Iterative Dose Reduction is software that iterates noise out of the image to increase image quality and lower radiation dose. The software intuitively improves the image by removing noise until the optimal image is produced. AIDR will come standard on the Aquilion Premium edition and Aquilion ONE.

"Target CTA and AIDR represent Toshiba's continued commitment to providing patients with safer CT exams without sacrificing the diagnostic confidence physicians require," Joseph Cooper, director of Toshiba's CT business unit, said in a statement.

Monday's announcement comes less than a week after KLAS, a research firm specializing in monitoring and reporting the performance of healthcare vendors, issued a report that examined 12 products from four CT vendors. The report, "CT 2010: Slice and Dose," noted that Toshiba's products took the top spots overall with the company maintaining its perennial top rankings for both 64-slice and 16-slice CT products, with scores of 91.4 and 91.1, respectively.

Toshiba said Target CTA and AIDR join the lineup of its dose-reduction technologies, including SUREExposure, SUREExposure Pediatric, QDS, and Boost3D.

SUREExposure and SUREExposure Pediatric adjust the dose levels each patient receives based on their size, age, and/or weight. These enable physicians to acquire high-quality images with the least possible amount of radiation.

QDS and Boost3D technologies improve image noise characteristics without increasing dose to the patient. These algorithms can be used to improve image quality while decreasing radiation dose. Applying QDS and Boost3D can achieve dose savings of up to 50% while preserving reconstruction speed, said Toshiba.

Medical facilities conducting more niche exams can use Toshiba's dose-reduction software packages, including Variable Helical Pitch (vHP) and SURECardio Prospective. These technologies come standard on the Aquilion ONE and can be added to the Aquilion 32, Aquilion 64, and Aquilion Premium CT systems.

VHP brings flexibility to scanning combination studies while significantly lowering dose and enhancing workflow. By improving the use of injected contrast material, vHP reduces the cost for hospitals or imaging centers and is safer for the patient. Toshiba said vHP can achieve a reduction of up to 55% in radiation dose over the use of a single gated pitch setting.

SureCardio Prospective combines the reliability and flexibility of helical cardiac acquisitions with the significant dose savings of prospective ECG gating. This approach produces high-quality diagnostic studies for all heart rates and can reduce radiation dose by up to 80%, said the company.

In addition, Active Collimation, a hardware feature standard on the Aquilion Premium and Aquilion ONE, is used to minimize the effects of helical over-ranging and reduce patient exposure by blocking out excess exposure at the beginning and end of a helical exam.