Artificial intelligence in single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) imaging: a narrative review Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • Artificial intelligence (AI) has been widely applied to medical imaging. The use of AI for emission computed tomography, particularly single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) emerged nearly 30 years ago but has been accelerated in recent years due to the development of AI technology. In this review, we will describe and discuss the progress of AI technology in SPECT imaging. The applications of AI are dispersed in disease prediction and diagnosis, post-reconstruction image denoising, attenuation map generation, and image reconstruction. These applications are relevant to many disease categories such as the neurological disorders, kidney failure, cancer, heart disease, etc. This review summarizes these applications so that SPECT researchers can have a reference overview of the role of AI in current SPECT studies. For each application, we followed the timeline to present the evolution of AI's usage and offered insights on how AI was combined with the knowledge of underlying physics as well as traditional non-learning techniques. Ultimately, AI applications are critical to the progress of modern SPECT technology because they provide compensations for many deficiencies in conventional SPECT imaging methods and demonstrate unparalleled success. Nonetheless, AI also has its own challenges and limitations in the medical field, including SPECT imaging. These fundamental questions are discussed, and possible future directions and countermeasures are suggested.

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publication date

  • May 2021