Purpose: The increasing need for better image quality and high spatial resolution for successful endovascular image-guided interventions (EIGIs) and the inherent limitations of the state-of-the-art detectors provide motivation to develop a detector system tailored to the specific, demanding requirements of neurointerventional applications.
Method: A microangiographic fluoroscope (MAF) was developed to serve as a high-resolution, region-of-interest (ROI) x-ray imaging detector in conjunction with large lower-resolution full field-of-view (FOV) state-of-the-art x-ray detectors. The newly developed MAF is an indirect x-ray imaging detector capable of providing real-time images (30 frames per second) with high-resolution, high sensitivity, no lag and low instrumentation noise. It consists of a CCD camera coupled to a Gen 2 dual-stage microchannel plate light image intensifier (LII) through a fiber-optic taper. A 300 microm thick CsI(T1) phosphor serving as the front end is coupled to the LII. The LII is the key component of the MAF and the large variable gain provided by it enables the MAF to operate as a quantum-noise-limited detector for both fluoroscopy and angiography.
Results: The linear cascade model was used to predict the theoretical performance of the MAF, and the theoretical prediction showed close agreement with experimental findings. Linear system metrics such as MTF and DQE were used to gauge the detector performance up to 10 cycles/mm. The measured zero frequency DQE(0) was 0.55 for an RQA5 spectrum. A total of 21 stages were identified for the whole imaging chain and each stage was characterized individually.
Conclusions: The linear cascade model analysis provides insight into the imaging chain and may be useful for further development of the MAF detector. The preclinical testing of the prototype detector in animal procedures is showing encouraging results and points to the potential for significant impact on EIGIs when used in conjunction with a state-of-art flat panel detector (FPD).