Volume of interest CBCT and tube current modulation for image guidance using dynamic kV collimation

David Parsons, James L. Robar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Purpose: The focus of this work is the development of a novel blade collimation system enabling volume of interest (VOI) CBCT with tube current modulation using the kV image guidance source on a linear accelerator. Advantages of the system are assessed, particularly with regard to reduction and localization of dose and improvement of image quality. Methods: A four blade dynamic kV collimator was developed to track a VOI during a CBCT acquisition. The current prototype is capable of tracking an arbitrary volume defined by the treatment planner for subsequent CBCT guidance. During gantry rotation, the collimator tracks the VOI with adjustment of position and dimension. CBCT image quality was investigated as a function of collimator dimension, while maintaining the same dose to the VOI, for a 22.2 cm diameter cylindrical water phantom with a 9 mm diameter bone insert centered on isocenter. Dose distributions were modeled using a dynamic BEAMnrc library and DOSXYZnrc. The resulting VOI dose distributions were compared to full-field CBCT distributions to quantify dose reduction and localization to the target volume. A novel method of optimizing x-ray tube current during CBCT acquisition was developed and assessed with regard to contrast-to-noise ratio (CNR) and imaging dose. Results: Measurements show that the VOI CBCT method using the dynamic blade system yields an increase in contrast-to-noise ratio by a factor of approximately 2.2. Depending upon the anatomical site, dose was reduced to 15%-80% of the full-field CBCT value along the central axis plane and down to less than 1% out of plane. The use of tube current modulation allowed for specification of a desired SNR within projection data. For approximately the same dose to the VOI, CNR was further increased by a factor of 1.2 for modulated VOI CBCT, giving a combined improvement of 2.6 compared to full-field CBCT. Conclusions: The present dynamic blade system provides significant improvements in CNR for the same imaging dose and localization of imaging dose to a predefined volume of interest. The approach is compatible with tube current modulation, allowing optimization of the imaging protocol.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1808
JournalMedical physics
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • cone-beam CT
  • current modulation
  • dose reduction
  • volume of interest

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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