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This research explores the feasibility of using gamma-ray radiography in medical imaging. We will show that gamma-ray medical radiography has the potential to provide alternative diagnostic medical information to X-ray radiography. Approximately one Ci Am-241 radioactive source which emits mono-energetic 59.5 keV gamma rays was used. Several factors that influence the feasibility of this study were tested. They were the radiation source uniformity, image uniformity, and image quality parameters such as contrast, noise, and spatial resolution. In addition, several gamma-ray and X-ray images were acquired using humanoid phantoms. These images were recorded on computed radiography image receptors and displayed on a standard monitor. Visual assessments of these images were then conducted. The Am-241 radioactive source provided relatively uniform radiation exposure and images. Image noise and image contrast were mainly dependent on the exposure time and source size, whereas spatial resolution was dependent on source size and magnification factor. The gamma-ray humanoid phantom images were of lower quality than the X-ray images mainly due to the low radioactivity used and not enough exposure time. Nevertheless, the gamma-ray images displayed most of the main structures contained in the humanoid phantoms. Higher exposure rates and thus lower exposure times were estimated for different pure Am-241 source sizes that are hypothesized to provide high quality images similar to X-ray images. For instance, a 10mm source size of pure Am-241 with 7s exposure time should produce images similar in contrast and noise to X-ray images. This research paves the way for the production and usage of a highly radioactive Am-241 source with the potential to lead to the feasibility of acceptable quality medical gamma-ray radiography. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Abdalmajeid M Alyassin, Hamza A Maqsoud, Ahmad M Mashat, Al-Sayed Al-Mohr, Subhan Abdulwajid. Feasibility study of gamma-ray medical radiography. Applied radiation and isotopes : including data, instrumentation and methods for use in agriculture, industry and medicine. 2013 Feb;72:16-29

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PMID: 23208227

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