To evaluate the effect of CT perfusion (CTp) protocol modifications on quantitative perfusion parameters, radiation dose and data processing time. CTp datasets of 30 patients (21M:9F) with rectal (n = 24) or retroperitoneal (n = 6) tumours were studied. Standard CTp protocol included 50 sec cine-phase (0.5 sec/rotation) and delayed-phase after 70 ml contrast bolus at 5-7 ml/sec. CTp-data was sub-sampled to generate modified datasets (n = 105) with cine-phase(n = 15) alone, varying cine-phase duration (20-40 sec, n = 45) and varying temporal sampling-interval (1-3 sec, n = 45). The estimated CTp parameters (BF,BV,MTT&PS) and radiation dose of standard CTp served as reference for comparison. CTp with 50 sec cine-phase showed moderate to high correlation with standard CTp for BF&MTT (r = 0.96&0.85) and low correlation for BV (0.75, p = 0.04). Limiting cine-phase duration to 30 sec demonstrated comparable results for BF&MTT, while considerable variation in CTp values existed at 20 sec. There was moderate-to-high correlation of CTp parameters with sampling interval of 1&2 sec (r = 0.83-0.97, p > 0.05), while at 3 sec only BF showed high correlation (r = 0.96, p = 0.05). Increasing sampling interval (47-60%) and reducing cine-phase duration substantially reduced dose(30.8-65%) which paralleled reduced data processing time (3-10 min). Limiting CTp cine-phase to 30 sec results in comparable BF&MTT values and increasing cine-phase sampling interval to 2 sec provides good correlation for all CTp parameters with substantial dose reduction and improved computational efficiency.
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