The somewhat-unanticipated demand for combined PET/CT imaging technology that was created to a large extent by the results from the prototype generated a response from major vendors of medical imaging equipment. However, given the choices for the CT and PET components, a number of decisions had to be made (Table 8.2) that included the appropriate level of CT and PET performance, the extent of hard- and software integration, the potential for upgrades, the targeted users and applications, and of course, the cost . Specifically, the main design questions are:
• what is an appropriate level of CT and PET performance?
• should standard PET transmission sources be provided in addition to CT-based attenuation correction?
• what is the level of hardware integration that can be achieved?
• what co-scan range of PET and CT should the patient handling system offer?
• what level of software integration can be achieved?
In the following sections we describe the design of the first commercial PET/CT tomograph that was developed by CTI PET Systems (CPS Innovations, Knoxville, TN) and presented at the Society of Nuclear Medicine Meeting 2000. Since then several other commercial PET/CT tomographs from other manufacturers have emerged and will be discussed towards the end of this chapter.
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