General X-ray images have a lower probability of nodule detection than other modalities. Especially in children, the probability of nodule detection can likely drop due to poor image quality from using low radiation dose. To demonstrate the effectiveness of fast non-local means (FNLM) filter to increase the probability of nodule detection in pediatric chest X-ray images and reduce radiation dose while maintaining image quality. Quantitative assessment of normalised noise power spectrum (NNPS), coefficient of variation (COV) and contrast to noise ratio (CNR) were performed after applying four filters (median, Wiener, total variation and FNLM) on a 1-year-old child phantom. A 3D-printed patient nodule phantom was inserted into the phantom. Assessment was performed on AP and LAT view images acquired with the tube voltage reduced to 38 and 27%, and tube current reduced to 84 and 61%, respectively. The results showed the lowest NNPS and COV values and the highest CNR value when the FNLM filter applied. Moreover, the AP view results showed 37% decrease in COV and 30% increase in CNR in images with the FNLM filter applied (images exposed with the tube voltage and current reduced to 29% and 50%, respectively). The LAT view results showed 5% decrease in COV and 36% increase in CNR in images with the FNLM filter applied (images exposed with the tube current reduced by 27%). By applying the FNLM filter, the probability of nodule detection could be increased by denoising and contrast enhancement. Moreover, using the FNLM filter could reduce cancer risk in pediatric patients by reducing radiation dose about 30% to 44%.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Waste Management and Disposal
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health