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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


eISSN: 1643-3750

Diagnostic quality of CT pulmonary angiography in pulmonary thromboembolism: A comparison of three different kV values

Ömer Yılmaz, Esma Dilek Üstün, Mustafa Kayan, Fatmanur Kayan, Aykut Recep Aktaş, Elif Nisa Ünlü, Bumin Değirmenci, Meltem Çetin

Department of Radiology, School of Medicine, Suleyman Demirel University, Isparta, Turkey

Med Sci Monit 2013; 19:908-915

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.889578

Available online:

Published: 2013-10-30


Background: Our purpose was to evaluate the effectiveness of different kilovolt (kV) uses in computed tomography pulmonary angiography (CTPA) in the diagnosis of pulmonary thromboembolism (PTE). We also aimed to establish the optimal kV value and investigate the possibility of obtaining appropriate imaging quality with minimal radiation dose.
Material and Methods: We compared 120, 100, and 80 kV CTPA for 90 patients in whom PTE was clinically considered. The examinations were carried out using a 128 multislice CT device (Definition AS, Siemens Medical Solutions, Forchheim, Germany). Each kV value was used on 30 patients in 3 groups. Patients in all groups were compared with respect to the mean radiation dose they received, pulmonary arterial attenuation values, image quality, and motion artefacts.
Results: With respect to pulmonary arterial attenuation values, imaging with 80 kV yielded significantly higher values (p<0.05). However, no difference was found between 120 kV, 100 kV, and 80 kV with respect to image quality. Similarly, no significant difference was detected between the groups with respect to pulmonary artery contrasting and motion artefacts. Statistically significant differences were present in DLP values and effective dose among all 3 groups (p<0.001).
Conclusions: Using 80 kV as the low value in CTPA imaging for patients pre-diagnosed with PTE will increase the density of pulmonary arteries and decrease the amount of radiation received.

Keywords: Angiography - methods, Analysis of Variance, Image Processing, Computer-Assisted - methods, Prospective Studies, Pulmonary Embolism - diagnosis, Radiation Dosage, Tomography, X-Ray Computed - methods