Cervical spine injuries occur in 4-8 % of adults with head trauma. Dual acquisition technique has been traditionally used for the CT scanning of brain and cervical spine. The purpose of this study was to determine the efficacy of radiation dose reduction by using a single acquisition technique that incorporated both anatomical regions with a dedicated neck detection algorithm. Thirty trauma patients for brain and cervical spine CT were included and were scanned with the single acquisition technique. The radiation doses from the single CT acquisition technique with the neck detection algorithm, which allowed appropriate independent dose administration relevant to brain and cervical spine regions, were recorded. Comparison was made both to the doses calculated from the simulation of the traditional dual acquisitions with matching parameters, and to the doses of retrospective dual acquisition legacy technique with the same sample size. The mean simulated dose for the traditional dual acquisition technique was 3.99 mSv, comparable to the average dose of 4.2 mSv from 30 previous patients who had CT of brain and cervical spine as dual acquisitions. The mean dose from the single acquisition technique was 3.35 mSv, resulting in a 16 % overall dose reduction. The images from the single acquisition technique were of excellent diagnostic quality. The new single acquisition CT technique incorporating the neck detection algorithm for brain and cervical spine significantly reduces the overall radiation dose by eliminating the unavoidable overlapping range between 2 anatomical regions which occurs with the traditional dual acquisition technique.
- Radiation dose