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A Systematic Review of Double Low-dose CT Pulmonary Angiography in Pulmonary Embolism

[ Vol. 15 , Issue. 5 ]


Sultan Aldosari and Zhonghua Sun*   Pages 453 - 460 ( 8 )


Background: The aim of this study is to perform a systematic review of the feasibility and clinical application of double low-dose CT pulmonary angiography (CTPA) in the diagnosis of patients with suspected pulmonary embolism.

Discussion: A total of 13 studies were found to meet selection criteria reporting both low radiation dose (70 or 80 kVp versus 100 or 120 kVp) and low contrast medium dose CTPA protocols. Lowdose CTPA resulted in radiation dose reduction from 29.6% to 87.5% in 12 studies (range: 0.4 to 23.5 mSv), while in one study, radiation dose was increased in the dual-energy CT group when compared to the standard 120 kVp group. CTPA with use of low contrast medium volume (range: 20 to 75 ml) was compared to standard CTPA (range: 50 to 101 ml) in 12 studies with reduction between 25 and 67%, while in the remaining study, low iodine concentration was used with 23% dose reduction achieved. Quantitative assessment of image quality (in terms of signal-to-noise ratio and contrast-to-noise ratio) showed that low-dose CTPA was associated with higher, lower and no change in image quality in 3, 3 and 6 studies, respectively when compared to the standard CTPA protocol. The subjective assessment indicated similar image quality in 11 studies between low-dose and standard CTPA groups, and improved image quality in 1 study with low-dose CTPA.

Conclusion: This review shows that double low-dose CTPA is feasible in the diagnosis of pulmonary embolism with significant reductions in both radiation and contrast medium doses, without compromising diagnostic image quality.


Diagnosis, patients, pulmonary embolism, radiation, reduction, CTPA.


Discipline of Medical Radiation Sciences, School of Molecular and Life Sciences, Curtin University, Perth, Discipline of Medical Radiation Sciences, School of Molecular and Life Sciences, Curtin University, Perth

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