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Multislice CT Virtual Intravascular Endoscopy for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Stent Grafts

Journal of Vascular and Interventional Radiology
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1097/
  • Laboratory Investigations
  • Medicine


PURPOSE To investigate the optimal scanning protocols of multislice computed tomographic (CT) angiography in aortic stent graft placement observed on virtual intravascular endoscopy (VIE). MATERIALS AND METHODS A human aorta phantom was built with a commercial aortic stent graft placed in situ. The phantom was housed in a perspex container and filled with contrast medium with CT attenuation similar to that used in the patient's abdominal scanning. CT was performed with a four-slice multislice CT scanner with section thickness of 1.3 mm, 2 mm, and 3.2 mm, pitch of 0.75, 1, and 1.5, and reconstruction interval of 50% overlap and no overlap. Stair-step artifacts were quantified by measuring the SD of signal intensity on surfaced shaded VIE images in three different locations: superior mesenteric artery (SMA), renal ostium, and aortic aneurysm. RESULTS Image quality of VIE images was independent of section thickness and pitch values in the level of renal ostium and aortic aneurysm ( P > .05), whereas it was determined by the section thickness and pitch in the level of SMA ( P < .05). Aortic branch origin became irregular or distorted when section thickness increased to 3.2 mm or pitch reached 1.5. CONCLUSION A scanning protocol of section thickness of 2 mm, pitch 1, and reconstruction interval of 1 mm is recommended in aortic stent graft placement because it allows fewer stair-step artifacts and better visualization of the aortic stent wires observed on VIE.

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