Comparison of a photon-counting-detector CT with an energy-integrating-detector CT for temporal bone imaging: A cadaveric study

W. Zhou, J. I. Lane, M. L. Carlson, M. R. Bruesewitz, R. J. Witte, K. K. Koeller, L. J. Eckel, R. E. Carter, C. H. McCollough, S. Leng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Evaluating abnormalities of the temporal bone requires high-spatial-resolution CT imaging. Our aim was to assess the performance of photon-counting-detector ultra-high-resolution acquisitions for temporal bone imaging and compare the results with those of energy-integrating-detector ultra-high-resolution acquisitions. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Phantom studies were conducted to quantify spatial resolution of the ultra-high-resolution mode on a prototype photon-counting-detector CT scanner and an energy-integrating-detector CT scanner that uses a comb filter. Ten cadaveric temporal bones were scanned on both systems with the radiation dose matched to that of the clinical examinations. Images were reconstructed using a sharp kernel, 0.6-mm (minimum) thickness for energy-integrating-detector CT, and 0.6- and 0.25-mm (minimum) thicknesses for photon-counting-detector CT. Image noise was measured and compared using adjusted 1-way ANOVA. Images were reviewed blindly by 3 neuroradiologists to assess the incudomallear joint, stapes footplate, modiolus, and overall image quality. The ranking results for each specimen and protocol were compared using the Friedman test. The Krippendorff was used for interreader agreement. RESULTS: Photon-counting-detector CT showed an increase of in-plane resolution compared with energy-integrating-detector CT. At the same thickness (0.6 mm), images from photon-counting-detector CT had significantly lower (P .001) image noise compared with energy-integrating-detector CT. Readers preferred the photon-counting-detector CT images to the energy-integrating-detector images for all 3 temporal bone structures. A moderate interreader agreement was observed with the Krippendorff 0.50. For overall image quality, photon-counting-detector CT image sets were ranked significantly higher than images from energy-integrating-detector CT (P .001). CONCLUSIONS: This study demonstrated substantially better delineation of fine anatomy for the temporal bones scanned with the ultra-high-resolution mode of photon-counting-detector CT compared with the ultra-high-resolution mode of a commercial energy-integrating-detector CT scanner.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1733-1738
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Neuroradiology
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Clinical Neurology


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