Purpose: The authors evaluated computed tomographic (CT) virtual colography for the detection of simulated polyps under ideal conditions, as well as the effects on lesion conspicuity of (a) collimation, (b) table pitch, and (c) orientation of the colon lumen with respect to the gantry.
Materials and methods: Pig colon was resected and cleansed, and polyps with diameters of 3, 7, and 10 mm were created. Each specimen was scanned with collimation of 5 and 7 mm and table pitch of 1.0, 1.6, and 2.0 at angles of 0 degrees, 45 degrees, and 90 degrees to the gantry. The initial two-dimensional (2D) images were reconstructed at 1-mm intervals (2D reconstructions), from which three-dimensional (3D) virtual colography images were generated. Polyp conspicuity on the initial and reconstructed 2D images and the 3D reconstructions was evaluated on a three-point scale: 0 = polyp not depicted, 1 = polyp faintly depicted, and 2 = polyp clearly depicted.
Results: The 10-mm-diameter polyp was clearly depicted (grade 2 conspicuity) on every initial and reconstructed 2D image and 3D reconstruction without regard to collimation, table pitch, or angle to the gantry. The 7-mm-diameter polyp was clearly depicted (grade 2 conspicuity) on every initial and reconstructed 2D image, but conspicuity on 3D reconstructions varied as the imaging parameters varied. The 3-mm-diameter polyp was faintly depicted (grade 1 conspicuity) on the initial and reconstructed 2D images and 3D reconstructions, but conspicuity varied on the 3D reconstructions as the imaging parameters varied.
Conclusion: CT virtual colography helped detection of small mucosal polyps regardless of the angle of the colon lumen to the gantry at which they were obtained.