Indian Journal of Nuclear Medicine
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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 36  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 69-72

“Picture-in-picture” artifact: Introduction and characterization of a hitherto unrecognized imaging artifact in creating perfusion defects in myocardial perfusion single-photon emission computed tomography

1 Department of Nuclear Medicine, Taleghani Educational Hospital, School of Medicine, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
2 Department of Medical Radiation Engineering, Science and Research Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Mohsen Qutbi
Department of Nuclear Medicine, Taleghani Hospital, Yaman Street, Velenjak, Tehran
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijnm.IJNM_55_20

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Following a moving hot spot in the projections of raw images and profound perfusion defects in myocardial perfusion single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) imaging of a patient, a hypothesis was postulated that the perfusion defects were artifactual, and the high activity concentration of the gallbladder may be a culprit for this phenomenon, owing to flawed event positioning function of the gamma camera due to a malfunctioning digital event processor electronics board. To depict the characteristics of this artifact, a point source containing an activity of 3 mCi of pertechnetate is placed on the scanning table with the detector facing the table (at a distance of 30 cm), and then, in other detector positions and 1-min static images are acquired accordingly. The ratio is calculated as follows: count of the artifactual focus: 1860, count of the index focus: 705,727, and artifactual-to-index focus ratio: 0.003. In testing the uniformity of gamma camera based on the National Electrical Manufacturers Association protocol, a nonuniform response was detected, seemingly, a smaller field of view (FOV) is reproduced in the main FOV causing nonuniformity more than the acceptable level. The smaller flood image lies in the upper right corner of the main flood image. In essence, the extremely bright gallbladder was the source of error, and its image was reproduced in the FOV, which was superimposed on the left ventricular myocardium in some of the projections and was propagated to SPECT images.

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