Construction of realistic hybrid computational fetal phantoms from radiological images in three gestational ages for radiation dosimetry applications

Phys Med Biol. 2019 Oct 10;64(20):205003. doi: 10.1088/1361-6560/ab44f8.


Radiation exposure and associated radiation risks are major concerns for fetal development for pregnant patients who undergo radiation therapy or diagnostic imaging procedures. In order to accurately estimate the radiation dose to the fetus and assess the uncertainty of fetal position and rotation, three hybrid computational fetus phantoms were constructed using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) for each fetus model as a starting point to construct a complete anatomically accurate fetus, gravid uterus, and placenta. A total of 27 fetal organs were outlined from radiological images via the Velocity Treatment Planning System. The DICOM-Structure set was imported to Rhinoceros software for further reconstruction of 3D fetus phantom model sets. All fetal organ masses were compared with ICRP-89 reference data. Our fetal model series corresponds to 20, 31, and 35 weeks of pregnancy, thus covering the second and third trimester. Fetal positions and locations were carefully adapted to represent the real fetus locations inside the uterus for each trimester of pregnancy. The new series of hybrid computational fetus models together with pregnant female models can be used in evaluating fetal radiation doses in diagnostic imaging and radiotherapy procedures.

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Fetus / radiation effects*
  • Gestational Age
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Models, Theoretical*
  • Phantoms, Imaging*
  • Pregnancy
  • Radiation Dosage
  • Radiation Exposure / adverse effects*
  • Radiometry / methods*