From artificial intelligence (AI) to 3D depth-sensing cameras, the integration of new technology into CT systems is expanding the scope of the modality’s various clinical applications, as well as increasing overall efficiency. Collectively, these advancements in CT appear primed to enhance clinical workflow and improve patient care.
At the forefront of Canon Medical Systems’ exhibit this year is the Aquilion One/Prism spectral CT scanner, which leverages AI to optimise wide-area spectral CT technology and increase its viability for more routine clinical use.
The scanner is equipped with the Advanced Intelligent Clear IQ Engine (AiCE), a deep learning-based protocol designed to deliver high quality CT scan reconstruction. It not only offers full field-of-view acquisition, 16cm wide-area coverage, and rapid kV switching with patient-specific tube-current modulation, but also combines these attributes with deep-learning reconstruction to improve energy separation and reduce noise for its images, the vendor said.
The integration of AiCE into wide-area spectral CT technology ultimately allows for the rapid output of clear, sharp images without the need to increase radiation dose, and has the potential to bolster the diagnostic confidence of its users, according to the company. The scanner also features a new CT fluoroscopy (CTF) interface for interventional procedures. The hybrid CTF interface is fitted with a touchscreen tablet and ergonomic controls.
Siemens Healthineers is presenting two of its most recent additions to the Somatom family at ECR 2020. Somatom On.site is a portable head CT scanner that aims to deliver bedside image acquisition to the intensive care unit with the same image quality as conventional fixed scanners.
On.site is a 32-slice scanner with a detector width of 0.7mm and gantry rotation coverage of 2.4cm. It sits on top of a motorised trolley for easy movement and includes a camera that displays a real-time view of the front of the scanner on an integrated touchscreen. The device also contains a self-shielded telescopic gantry designed to reduce scatter radiation by moving the tube and detector away from the patient bore during scanning.
The mobility of On.site allows patients to undergo head CT scans without having to leave their beds and disconnect from fixed devices, reducing the risk of complications related to patient transportation, Siemens said.
The company is also highlighting its single-source CT scanner, Somatom X.cite. The scanner contains a large gantry bore (82cm) and specialised lighting to maximise comfort for patients. It is also equipped with Siemens’ Fast optical 3D overhead camera for patient positioning, a removable tablet that allows technologists to remain alongside the patient until immediately before the scan.
Both On.site and X.cite feature Siemens’ new AI user interface myExam Companion, which recognises optimal image acquisition and reconstruction parameters based on patient-specific information. The myExam Companion interface contains at least 20 clinical decision trees that guide users through scan preparations.
For Philips Healthcare, theIncisive CT is in one of the company’s main offerings this year. The scanner is available in several distinct setups, including with 2cm and 4cm detector width as well as 32-, 64-, and 128-slice configurations. The scanner comes with DoseWise Portal radiation dose management software, iDose4 algorithm for image artefact reduction, and metal artefact reduction tool for large orthopaedic implants.
Incisive CT’s various features enable it to support inter-operator consistency, increase uptime, and decrease time to results by as much as 19%, which aims to improve the overall CT experience for patients and staff, the company said. What’s more, Philips is applying its Tube for Life guarantee to all orders. Under the agreement, customers receive x-ray tube replacements for the entire course of the scanner’s lifetime at no added cost, cutting operating expenses by an estimated 380,000 euros per machine.
The company is displaying several other scanners, including the 256-slice CT 6000 iCT device and CT 5000 Ingenuity scanner platform in 64- and 128-slice configurations. To bolster patient data protection, Philips recently installed new cybersecurity updates for both systems.
The headliner for GE Healthcare’s CT line-up at this year’s congress is the Revolution Maxima, a high-performance scanner built to boost workflow ease and efficiency. To that end, the vendor has integrated a variety of tools and services into the scanner, including a patient-positioning system called Auto Positioning. Powered by the Edison AI programme, it addresses the issue of inaccurate patient positioning during scanning by using a real-time depth-sensing camera to generate a 3D model of a patient lying on the scanner bed and then applying a deep-learning algorithm to locate the centre of the scan range and align it with the bore. This information allows the scanner to centre the patient automatically after a single click.
The Revolution Maxima’s automated, real-time process for patient positioning can help to expand and increase the efficiency of CT scanning services, giving clinicians more time to dedicate to other aspects of patient care, according to the manufacturer.
Also on the display docket is the Revolution EVO Gen 3. The company is offering its deep-learning image reconstruction engine as a software upgrade for the scanner so that it can generate TrueFidelity CT images. These high-powered images are characterised by greater spatial resolution and low-contrast detectability and have the potential to improve diagnostic interpretation without compromising dose levels, said the company.
Samsung Neurologica’s OmniTom CT is reprising its role as the centrepiece of the company’s CT presentation at ECR 2020. The product enables the acquisition of non-contrast CT, CT angiography, and CT perfusion scans directly at the point-of-care. The 16-slice scanner has an ultrasmall footprint, short scan times, and an option for immediate image viewing, making it ideal for imaging critical care patients, Samsung said.