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Graphics Intel Medicine Technology

Algorithm Brings Speedier, Safer CT Scans 58

kenekaplan writes "Standard CT scanners can generate images of patient's body in less than five minutes today, but the radiation dose can be equal to about 70 chest X-rays. Lower-powered CT scans can be used in non-emergency situations, but it can take more than four days to produce those images. Intel and GE created an algorithm that speeds up a computer's ability to process the low radiation dose scans by 100x, from 100 hours per image to one hour."
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Algorithm Brings Speedier, Safer CT Scans

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  • by ColdWetDog ( 752185 ) on Monday March 12, 2012 @04:20PM (#39330943) Homepage

    1. I hate 'news articles' that are chock full of hyperbole and mis information. TFA implies that most CT scanning is done in the ER for life or death reasons which is hardly true. It oversells the current radiation dose of modern 16+ slice scanners and attempts to lower the radiation doses for all CTs.
    2. Current gen CT scanners cut the dose of most tests by at least half from the second and third gen scanners. Of course, TFA doesn't mention how good the new dose regimens are in terms of decreasing dose.
    3. It appears that this new tech has a significant price tag. TFA quoted 1.5 million for a 128 slice scanner with the "new algorithm". More slices = faster and more resolution, but mostly faster. The current 'top of the line' is 64 slice. "Standard" CTs are 16 slice and cost anywhere from $150 - 250K.
    4. At least the GE scanners run Linux!

  • by ColdWetDog ( 752185 ) on Monday March 12, 2012 @05:03PM (#39331505) Homepage

    No, I added a few things -

    1. The article makes breathless claims about "emergency' CT scans and gives a decidedly FUD picture to the issue of radiation exposure via medical devices. It's there, just not as dramatically as mentioned.
    2. I added the different generations of CT scanners to point out that manufacturers have been cutting down dosage systematically and significantly over the past couple of decades. Again, it's really just progress.....
    3. The cost of the 128 slice "new algorithm" scanner is almost an order of magnitude more than a base gen 3 CT scan. It does things that the cheaper scanner doesn't but that's a pretty high price to pay. The info comes from a linked article in TFA (see my post below the first one).
    4. This is Slashdot. I thought somebody would appreciate this bit of technical trivia. Of course, if it ran OS X or if Google developed it, the thread would get 10 times the comments this one will get.

    Mostly I'm just grumping about stupid press releases. If they toned down the rhetoric and added some technical detail, it might be an interesting Slashdot post. As it is, it's just fluffy techno pony drivel.

    Now, if you don't mind, it's time for my nap....

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 12, 2012 @05:51PM (#39332177)

    The heat you felt is really because the iodine gets to the thyroid provoking a thermal regulation change.

  • by Macman408 ( 1308925 ) on Monday March 12, 2012 @07:24PM (#39333253)

    I think this very much is an Intel ad. I was curious, because this sounded familiar, so I looked it up. From the press release and GE's white paper [], it looks like their system:
    Uses 25 mAs dose (75% less than standard, they say)
    Is ready in an hour, 100 times faster than when they started in 2006 (so 6-10x of that speedup is Moore's Law, the other 10-16x is algorithm improvement)
    Uses 28 quad-core Xeons

    On the other hand, a GPU solution [] from 2 years ago:
    Gives a 2-4 mAs dose (97-99% less than standard, they say)
    Is ready in 1-2 minutes, 100 times faster than contemporary CPU algorithms
    Uses a single GPU

    Better, faster, cheaper... Pick three.

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