Rapid computation of single PET scan rest-stress myocardial blood flow parametric images by table look up

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We have recently reported a method for measuring rest-stress myocardial blood flow (MBF) using a single, relatively short, PET scan session. The method requires two IV tracer injections, one to initiate rest imaging and one at peak stress. We previously validated absolute flow quantitation in ml/min/cc for standard bull's eye, segmental analysis. In this work, we extend the method for fast computation of rest-stress MBF parametric images.


We provide an analytic solution to the single-scan rest-stress flow model which is then solved using a two-dimensional table lookup method (LM). Simulations were performed to compare the accuracy and precision of the lookup method with the original nonlinear method (NLM). Then the method was applied to 16 single scan rest/stress measurements made in 12 pigs: seven studied after infarction of the left anterior descending artery (LAD) territory, and nine imaged in the native state. Parametric maps of rest and stress MBF as well as maps of left (fLV) and right (fRV) ventricular spill-over fractions were generated. Regions of interest (ROIs) for 17 myocardial segments were defined in bull's eye fashion on the parametric maps. The mean of each ROI was then compared to the rest (K1r) and stress (K1s) MBF estimates obtained from fitting the 17 regional TACs with the NLM.


In simulation, the LM performed as well as the NLM in terms of precision and accuracy. The simulation did not show that bias was introduced by the use of a predefined two-dimensional lookup table. In experimental data, parametric maps demonstrated good statistical quality and the LM was computationally much more efficient than the original NLM. Very good agreement was obtained between the mean MBF calculated on the parametric maps for each of the 17 ROIs and the regional MBF values estimated by the NLM (K1mapLM = 1.019 × K1ROINLM + 0.019, R2 = 0.986; mean difference = 0.034 ± 0.036 mL/min/cc).


We developed a table lookup method for fast computation of parametric imaging of rest and stress MBF. Our results show the feasibility of obtaining good quality MBF maps using modest computational resources, thus demonstrating that the method can be applied in a clinical environment to obtain full quantitative MBF information.

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