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BIRMINGHAM, AL, United States

Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 130.31K | Year: 2005

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): It is known that conventional anti-scatter grids are limited in their ability to control scatter in general radiography. In recent years this problem has been aggravated by the use of less efficient (thin, high line density, low lead content) grids, and the increasing size of patients. As a result, radiographic image quality is often insufficient to answer questions concerning trauma and other clinical areas, and patients undergo additional higher dose, more expensive imaging exams. In many instances these additional exams could be eliminated and health care costs reduced if a better radiographic imaging system were available. We propose a coarse, high-ratio air interspace grid coupled to an orthogonally aligned low-ratio conventional grid. Together, these will effectively eliminate scatter and will have a primary transmission comparable to commonly used grids. A low-ratio grid is compatible with a range of source-to-image distances (SIDs). The coarse grid will have articulating grid slats, permitting variable SIDs and angled views. In order to build a compact and clinically acceptable system, the coarse grid can only move a short distance to blur out grid lines. It has been demonstrated that this can be accomplished by employing a quasi-trapezoidal x-ray tube current waveform. In Phase I we propose to demonstrate that an appropriate quasi-trapezoidal x-ray tube current waveform can be obtained in general radiography. In Phase II we propose to design and construct a compact and high efficiency crossed-grid system, interface it to an x-ray generator, and demonstrate that it can control scatter much more effectively than a conventional grid. The system will be able to accommodate general radiography, chest radiography, angled projections, tomography, and a range of SIDs. It can be used with either screen-film or digital image receptors, and will improve tomosynthesis and dual energy applications. RELEVANCE TO PUBLIC HEALTH: General radiography (x-ray images) plays an important role in health care delivery. Scattered radiation degrades image quality; social and technical trends have aggravated this problem in recent years. We propose a scatter control system that greatly increases the image quality of x- ray images without increasing patient dose.


Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 0.00 | Year: 2003

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Bedside radiography is an area of x-ray imaging in which there is no commercially viable means of controlling scattered radiation. This is due to the difficulty in aligning the focal spot with an anti-scatter grid. X-ray scatter therefore often reduces the contrast in bedside radiographs by a factor of 10 or more. This problem is exacerbated in digital imaging systems, which are usually more sensitive to scatter than conventional systems. A practical and convenient solution to this problem is proposed, in which the position and orientation of the anti-scatter grid is determined by a computer. In Phase I we demonstrated a simple means of determining the grid position and orientation relative to the tube head. In Phase II we propose to incorporate this system into a modified complete pre-production mobile radiographic unit and to demonstrate its clinical utility.


Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 880.76K | Year: 2003

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Bedside radiography is an area of x-ray imaging in which there is no commercially viable means of controlling scattered radiation. This is due to the difficulty in aligning the focal spot with an anti-scatter grid. X-ray scatter therefore often reduces the contrast in bedside radiographs by a factor of 10 or more. This problem is exacerbated in digital imaging systems, which are usually more sensitive to scatter than conventional systems. A practical and convenient solution to this problem is proposed, in which the position and orientation of the anti-scatter grid is determined by a computer. In Phase I we demonstrated a simple means of determining the grid position and orientation relative to the tube head. In Phase II we propose to incorporate this system into a modified complete pre-production mobile radiographic unit and to demonstrate its clinical utility.


Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 300.41K | Year: 2011

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Antiscatter grids currently employed on fluoroscopic systems are limited in their capability to control scatter. As a result, fluoroscopic radiation levels are higher for the average patient than they would be with a more efficient grid system, and higher still for large patients. Poor image quality often increases the beam-on time required to successfully perform interventional procedures, increasing the radiation dose still further. This problem is critical in interventional exams, where skin doses are occasionally high enough to induce radiation burns1-3, and effective doses often exceed those of CT exams4 and contribute about 14% of the nationwide effective dose from medical imaging procedures5. Our proposal is to develop a high efficiency antiscatter grid system that will result in a significant improvement in fluoroscopy system dose efficiency. The results of our benchmarked Monte Carlo modeling indicate that a factor of 1.5 to 2.0 or more improvement is achievable.Cardiologists and radiologists can use this improvement either to produce higher quality images at current fluoroscopic radiation levels, allowing them to shorten exams, or to produce images comparable to today's image quality standards at markedly lower dose rates. The proposed innovative antiscatter grid system will incorporate a coarse strip density, air interspaced grid and a reciprocating grid drive with innovative approaches to suppress vibrations and grid artifacts. In Phase I we will build a grid and drive system and demonstrate: 1) the use of the system in fluorographic (digital spot) imaging; 2) the robust suppression of grid artifacts; and 3) a dose efficiency at least 1.5 times greater than that of commonly used grids. In Phase II we will build avibration-free reciprocating drive system suitable for fluoroscopic imaging, a compact x-ray tube grid bias supply to perform fast x-ray switching for short x-ray pulses, and with our manufacturing partner we will modify a commercially available clinicalfluoroscopy unit to demonstrate the use and performance of the grid system. Of practical importance is that the domestic manufacturer has already expressed interest in evaluating the grid system for inclusion in their product line and in commercializing the technology. PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: Millions of fluoroscopic examinations are performed each year, and these exams often result in high patient radiation doses and injury1-3, are among the highest dose exams in medical imaging4, and account for 14% of the effective dose from medical imaging in the United States5. We propose to improve the dose efficiency of fluoroscopy by a factor of 1.5 to 2.0 or more. This significant improvement will be accomplished by building an innovative high efficiency antiscatter grid system; clinical fluoroscopic systems using this grid system will be able to achieve markedly improved image quality at current radiation dose levels, or alternatively will be able to achieve image quality comparable to that obtained on today's fluoroscopic systems at a fraction of the radiation dose.


Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 841.25K | Year: 2006

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): It is known that conventional anti-scatter grids are limited in their ability to control scatter in general radiography. In recent years this problem has been aggravated by the use of less efficient (thin, high line density, low lead content) grids, and the increasing size of patients. As a result, radiographic image quality is often insufficient to answer questions concerning trauma and other clinical areas, and patients undergo additional higher dose, more expensive imaging exams. In many instances these additional exams could be eliminated and health care costs reduced if a better radiographic imaging system were available. We propose a coarse, high-ratio air interspace grid coupled to an orthogonally aligned low-ratio conventional grid. Together, these will effectively eliminate scatter and will have a primary transmission comparable to commonly used grids. A low-ratio grid is compatible with a range of source-to-image distances (SIDs). The coarse grid will have articulating grid slats, permitting variable SIDs and angled views. In order to build a compact and clinically acceptable system, the coarse grid can only move a short distance to blur out grid lines. It has been demonstrated that this can be accomplished by employing a quasi-trapezoidal x-ray tube current waveform. In Phase I we propose to demonstrate that an appropriate quasi-trapezoidal x-ray tube current waveform can be obtained in general radiography. In Phase II we propose to design and construct a compact and high efficiency crossed-grid system, interface it to an x-ray generator, and demonstrate that it can control scatter much more effectively than a conventional grid. The system will be able to accommodate general radiography, chest radiography, angled projections, tomography, and a range of SIDs. It can be used with either screen-film or digital image receptors, and will improve tomosynthesis and dual energy applications. RELEVANCE TO PUBLIC HEALTH: General radiography (x-ray images) plays an important role in health care delivery. Scattered radiation degrades image quality; social and technical trends have aggravated this problem in recent years. We propose a scatter control system that greatly increases the image quality of x- ray images without increasing patient dose.

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