Virtual endoscopy of the paranasal sinuses using perspective volume rendered helical sinus computed tomography.
Our goal was to use three-dimensional information obtained from helical computed tomographic (CT) data to explore and evaluate the nasal cavity, nasopharynx, and paranasal sinuses by simulated virtual endoscopy (VE). This was done by utilizing a new image reconstruction method known as perspective volume rendering (PVR). Thin-section helical CT of the nasal cavity, nasopharynx, and paranasal sinuses was performed on a conventional CT scanner. The data were transferred to a workstation to create views similar to those seen with endoscopy. Additional views not normally accessible by conventional endoscopy were generated. Key perspectives were selected, and a video "flight" model was choreographed and synthesized through the nasal cavity and sinuses based on the CT data. VE allows evaluation of the nasal cavity, nasopharynx, and paranasal sinuses with appreciation of the relationships of these spatially complex structures. In addition, this technique allows structural visualization with unconventional angles, perspectives, and locations not conventionally accessible. Although biopsies, cultures, and lavages routinely done with endoscopy cannot be performed with VE, this technique holds promise for improving the diagnostic evaluation of the nasal cavity, the nasopharynx, and the paranasal sinuses. The unconventional visual perspectives and very low morbidity may complement many applications of simple diagnostic endoscopy.
Gilani, S; Norbash, AM; Ringl, H; Rubin, GD; Napel, S; Terris, DJ
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