PET vs. SPECT: in the context of ongoing developments

Document Type: Review Article

Author

Department of Radiology, School of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, USA

Abstract

This paper intends to compare the abilities of the two major imaging modalities in nuclear medicine imaging: Positron Emission Tomography (PET) and Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography (SPECT). The motivations are many-fold: (i) To gain a better understanding of the strengths and limitations of the two imaging modalities in the context of recent and ongoing developments in hardware and software design; (ii) To emphasize that certain issues, historically and commonly thought as limitations, may now be instead viewed as challenges that can be addressed; (iii) To point out that existing PET and SPECT scanners in the field can (much) benefit from improvements in image-reconstruction software; (iii) To point-out (to engineers, physicists and software-developers) important areas of research in PET and SPECT imaging that will be instrumental to further improvements in the two modalities;

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