1Department of Radiology, University of California San Diego School of Medicine, La Jolla, CA
2Department of Neurosurgery, University of California San Diego School of Medicine, La Jolla, CA
3Department of Psychiatry, University of California San Diego School of Medicine, La Jolla, CA
CT is the mainstay imaging modality for assessing change in ventricular volume in patients with ventricular shunts or external ventricular drains (EVDs). We evaluated the performance of a novel fully automated CT registration and subtraction method to improve reader accuracy and confidence compared with standard CT.
In a retrospective evaluation of 49 ventricular shunt or EVD patients who underwent sequential head CT scans with an automated CT registration tool (CT CoPilot), three readers were assessed on their ability to discern change in ventricular volume between scans using standard axial CT images versus reformats and subtraction images generated by the registration tool. The inter-rater reliability among the readers was calculated using an intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC). Bland–Altman tests were performed to determine reader performance compared to semi-quantitative assessment using the bifrontal horn and third ventricular width. McNemar’s test was used to determine whether the use of the registration tool increased the reader’s level of confidence.
Inter-rater reliability was higher when using the output of the registration tool (single measure ICC of 0.909 with versus 0.755 without the tool). Agreement between the readers’ assessment of ventricular volume change and the semi-quantitative assessment improved with the registration tool (limits of agreement 4.1 vs 4.3). Furthermore, the tool improved reader confidence in determining increased or decreased ventricular volume (p < 0.001).
Automated CT registration and subtraction improves the reader's ability to detect change in ventricular volume between sequential scans in patients with ventricular shunts or EVDs.
Our automated CT registration and subtraction method may serve as a promising generalizable tool for accurate assessment of change in ventricular volume, which can significantly affect clinical management.