- Keywords: Image denoising, Generative adversarial network, SPECT
- TL;DR: We applied the generative adversarial network to reduce the noise level of SPECT images.
- Abstract: The image noise level and resolution of SPECT images are relatively poor attributed to the limited number of detected counts and various physical degradation factors during acquisitions. This study aims to apply and evaluate the use of generative adversarial network (GAN) method in static SPECT image denoising. A population of 4D extended cardiac-torso (XCAT) phantoms were used to simulate 10 male and female patients with different organ sizes and activity uptakes. An analytical projector was applied to simulate 120 projections from right anterior oblique to left posterior oblique positions with two noise levels. The first noise level was based on a standard clinical count rate of 987 MBq injection and 16 min acquisition (low noise) while the other was 1/8 of the previous count rate (high noise). The high noise and low noise SPECT reconstructed images of 9 patients, i.e., 1026 images (9×114 axial slices) respectively, were paired for training. High noise SPECT images of 1 patient were tested using the trained GAN. The noise level is substantially reduced in high noise SPECT reconstructed images after using the GAN. Our method has the potential to decrease the noise level of SPECT images, which could be traded for a reduced injection dose or acquisition time while still maintaining the similar image quality as compared to the original low noise images for clinical diagnosis.
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