Dosimetric evaluation of a 320 detector row CT scanner unit
Background. The technologic improvements in Multislice scanners include the increment in the X-ray beam width. Some new CT scanners are equipped with a 320 detector row which allows a longitudinal coverage of 160 mm and a total of 640 slices for a single rotation. When such parameters are used the length of the traditional pencil chamber (10 cm) is no more appropriate to measure the standard weighted computed tomography dose index (CTDIw) value.
Materials and methods. Dosimetric measurements were performed on a 640 slices Toshiba Aquilion One CT scanner using common instrumentation available in Medical Physics Departments.
Results. For the measurements in air, two different ionization chambers were completely exposed to the beam. Dosimeters showed an acceptable agreement in the measurements. To evaluate the actual shape of the dose profile strips of Gafchromic XRQA film were used. Films were previously calibrated on site. From the graphic response of the scanned film it is possible to evaluate the full width at half maximum (FWHM) of the dose profile which represent the actual beam width.
Conclusions. Computed Tomography Dose Index (CTDI) and Dose Length Product (DLP) need to be changed when the beam width of the CT scanner is over 100 mm. To perform dose evaluation with the conventional instrumentation, two parameters should be considered: the average absorbed dose and the actual beam width. To measure the average absorbed dose, the conventional ionization chamber can be used. For the measurement of the width of the dose profile, Gafchromic XRQA film seemed to be suitable.
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