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PATIENT HANDLING STRUCTURES FOR PET IMAGING

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000214646D
Publication Date: 2012-Feb-01
Document File: 5 page(s) / 86K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

A patient handling structure for Positron Emission Tomography (PET) system, is disclosed. The patient handling structure provides minimal mass in the region of PET detector (or PET gap) by eliminating stationary transport structure and minimizing mass of moving components in the PET gap. The patient handling structure includes structural supports and rolling elements. The structural supports are mounted on both sides of the PET gap. The rolling elements, such as rollers are attached to the structural supports and may be removable. Further, the patient handling structure described herein is compatible with movable patient supports, like a patient cradle and a carriage assembly to travel through the PET gap without falling in by use of the rolling elements and geometrical features on the structural supports, carriage assembly, and the patient cradle.

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PATIENT HANDLING STRUCTURES FOR PET IMAGING

FIELD OF INVENTION

The invention generally relates to patient handling structures and more particularly to a minimal mass patient handling structure for Positron Emission Tomography (PET) imaging systems.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Attenuation occurs in Positron Emission Tomography (PET) when photons emitted by radiotracers inside the body of a subject are absorbed by intervening structures between a detector and photon emission source. Intervening structures include tissue of the patient and structural components of PET imaging apparatus. Path traversed by the emitted photon to the detector is a line of response (LOR). As different LORs must traverse different thicknesses of materials and tissue, the photons are attenuated differentially. Such attenuating structures, especially in PET detector region attenuate gamma rays, which reduces PET signal to the detectors and degrades image quality (IQ) significantly.

A major enabler of good IQ for an imaging system that utilizes PET, requires minimum attenuating structures or mass in region of PET detector. One of the structures, that is essentially a part of the region of PET detector is a patient handling structure. To minimize IQ attenuation in the region of PET detector due to the patient handling structure, the patient handling structure requires to be designed to minimize mass.

Hence there exists a need for an improved patient handling structure that provides minimum IQ attenuation.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

The invention provides a patient handling structure. The patient handling structure described herein is designed to minimize mass and thereby provide minimum PET signal attenuation. Such patient handling structure enhances image quality of PET imaging systems.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

A patient handling structure for Positron Emission Tomography (PET) system, such as a PET-MR system, includes stationary components and moving components that are required to transport a patient. The patient handling structure disclosed herein, provides minimal mass in the region of PET detector (or PET gap) by eliminating stationary transport structure and minimizing mass of moving components in the PET gap.

FIG. 1

As shown in FIG. 1, the patient handling structure includes structural supports and rolling elements. The structural supports on both sides of the PET gap, are mounted directly on PET tube, outer imaging system frame or floor. The structural supports are detachable for serviceability, independent of each other, and adjustable on both sides of the PET gap. The rolling elements, such as rollers are attached to the structural supports and may be removable. The patient handling structure described herein is compatible with movable patient supports, like a patient cradle and a carriage assembly to travel through the PET gap without falling in by use of the rolling elements and geometrical features on the structural supports, carriage as...