Low dose CBCT reconstruction via prior contour based total variation (PCTV) regularization: A feasibility study

Yingxuan Chen, Fang Fang Yin, Yawei Zhang, You Zhang, Lei Ren

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Purpose: compressed sensing reconstruction using total variation (TV) tends to over-smooth the edge information by uniformly penalizing the image gradient. The goal of this study is to develop a novel prior contour based TV (PCTV) method to enhance the edge information in compressed sensing reconstruction for CBCT. Methods: the edge information is extracted from prior planning-CT via edge detection. Prior CT is first registered with on-board CBCT reconstructed with TV method through rigid or deformable registration. The edge contours in prior-CT is then mapped to CBCT and used as the weight map for TV regularization to enhance edge information in CBCT reconstruction. The PCTV method was evaluated using extended-cardiac-torso (XCAT) phantom, physical CatPhan phantom and brain patient data. Results were compared with both TV and edge preserving TV (EPTV) methods which are commonly used for limited projection CBCT reconstruction. Relative error was used to calculate pixel value difference and edge cross correlation was defined as the similarity of edge information between reconstructed images and ground truth in the quantitative evaluation. Results: compared to TV and EPTV, PCTV enhanced the edge information of bone, lung vessels and tumor in XCAT reconstruction and complex bony structures in brain patient CBCT. In XCAT study using 45 half-fan CBCT projections, compared with ground truth, relative errors were 1.5%, 0.7% and 0.3% and edge cross correlations were 0.66, 0.72 and 0.78 for TV, EPTV and PCTV, respectively. PCTV is more robust to the projection number reduction. Edge enhancement was reduced slightly with noisy projections but PCTV was still superior to other methods. PCTV can maintain resolution while reducing the noise in the low mAs CatPhan reconstruction. Low contrast edges were preserved better with PCTV compared with TV and EPTV. Conclusion: PCTV preserved edge information as well as reduced streak artifacts and noise in low dose CBCT reconstruction. PCTV is superior to TV and EPTV methods in edge enhancement, which can potentially improve the localization accuracy in radiation therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number085014
JournalPhysics in medicine and biology
Issue number8
StatePublished - Apr 19 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • compressed sensing
  • cone-beam CT
  • edge preserving
  • image reconstruction
  • low dose
  • prior image
  • total variation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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