Tc-99m attenuation coefficients in water-filled phantoms determined with gamma cameras.
Quantitative imaging with gamma cameras requires compensation for attenuation of source photons. Some methods of compensation make use of a constant or average estimated attenuation coefficient mu. A value for mu of 0.15 cm-1 for 140.5-keV photons in water or tissue is commonly used. This value, however, neglects scattered photons which are detected within the energy window in gamma camera imaging. Values for mu of 0.12 cm-1 used in attenuation compensation of Tc-99m single-photon emission computed tomography scans of uniform cylindrical sources have been shown to give improved results compared with use of mu = 0.15 cm-1. In this study, gamma cameras and a multichannel pulse-height analyzer were used to determine effective values of mu for photons in water as a function of energy window. Two cylindrical water-filled phantoms, circular and elliptical, were used with a point source of Tc-99m at depths up to 18 cm. Energy data were integrated over the top half of the photopeak, and over 10%, 20%, and 30% windows centered on the photopeak. Attenuation curves were exponential for all photopeak windows with values of mu of 0.12 +/- 0.014 cm-1 for all windows up to 20% and 0.1 cm-1 for a 30% window. This study suggests that a value of mu of 0.11-0.12 cm-1 is, in fact, appropriate for use in attenuation compensations where an average is required.
Harris, CC; Greer, KL; Jaszczak, RJ; Floyd, CE; Fearnow, EC; Coleman, RE
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