Artefacts of PET/CT images

Cinzia Pettinato, C. Nanni, M. Farsad, P. Castellucci, A. Sarnelli, S. Civollani, R. Franchi, S. Fanti, M. Marengo, C. Bergamini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Positron emission tomography (PET) is a non-invasive imaging modality, which is clinically widely used both for diagnosis and accessing therapy response in oncology, cardiology and neurology. Fusing PET and CT images in a single dataset would be useful for physicians who could read the functional and the anatomical aspects of a disease in a single shot. The use of fusion software has been replaced in the last few years by integrated PET/CT systems, which combine a PET and a CT scanner in the same gantry. CT images have the double function to correct PET images for attenuation and can fuse with PET for a better visualization and localization of lesions. The use of CT for attenuation correction yields several advantages in terms of accuracy and patient comfort, but can also introduce several artefacts on PET-corrected images. PET/CT image artefacts are due primarily to metallic implants, respiratory motion, use of contrast media and image truncation. This paper reviews different types artefacts and their correction methods. PET/CT improves image quality and image accuracy. However, to avoid possible pitfalls the simultaneous display of both Computed Tomography Attenuation Corrected (CTAC) and non corrected PET images, side by side with CT images is strongly recommended.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere60
JournalBiomedical Imaging and Intervention Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2006


  • Artefact
  • Attenuation correction
  • PET/CT

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology


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