Each year approximately two out of every 1,000 Canadians experiences a heart attack. These patients are at increased risk for heart failure, a serious condition in which the heart cannot pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs. Heart inflammation that lasts too long following a heart attack may increase the risk of heart failure. The development of an imaging method to monitor this inflammation will help scientists develop and apply therapies. Dr.
Recently, a new whole-body PET/MRI scanner was developed and installed at St. Joseph’s Healthcare in London, Ontario and remains the only installation in Canada. Two major challenges concerning PET imaging include the need for correcting for loss of photons, called attenuation, due to interactions with patient tissues and the impact of respiratory induced organ/tumour motion during scanning. Corrections for attenuation are currently performed using X-ray CT.
Positron Emission Tomography (PET) images need correction for the loss of photons. This loss, or attenuation, is due to interactions with patient tissues. Corrections are currently done with X-ray Computed Tomography (CT), however we are proposing a method whereby Magnetic Resonance Images (MRI) are used. This will be done by creating an attenuation map(?-map). The construction of ?-maps can be divided into two categories, patient specific ?-maps by MRI segmentation, and registration of a predefined atlas to an MRI.
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