Background: The corona-virus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has caused a serious public health risk. Compared with conventional high-resolution CT (C-HRCT, matrix 512), ultra-high resolution CT (U-HRCT, matrix 1024) can increase the effective pixel per unit volume by about 4 times. Our study is to evaluate the value of target reconstruction of U-HRCT in the accurate diagnosis of COVID-19.
Methods: A total of 13 COVID-19 cases, 44 cases of other pneumonias, and 6 cases of ground-glass nodules were retrospectively analyzed. The data were categorized into groups A (C-HRCT) and B (U-HRCT), following which iDose4-3 and iDose4-5 were used for target reconstruction, respectively. CT value, noise, and signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) in different reconstructed images were measured. Two senior imaging doctors scored the image quality and the structure of the lesions on a 5-point scale. Chi-square test, variance analysis, and binary logistic regression analysis were used for statistical analysis.
Results: U-HRCT image can reduce noise and improve SNR with an increase of the iterative reconstruction level. The SNR of U-HRCT image was lower than that of the C-HRCT image of the same iDose4 level, and the noise of U-HRCT was higher than that of C-HRCT image; the difference was statistically significant (P < 0.05). Logistic regression analysis showed that peripleural distribution, thickening of blood vessels and interlobular septum, and crazy-paving pattern were independent indictors of the COVID-19 on U-HRCT. U-HRCT was superior to C-HRCT in showing the blood vessels, bronchial wall, and interlobular septum in the ground-glass opacities; the difference was statistically significant (P < 0.05).
Conclusions: Peripleural distribution, thickening of blood vessels and interlobular septum, and crazy-paving pattern on U-HRCT are favorable signs for COVID-19. U-HRCT is superior to C-HRCT in displaying the blood vessels, bronchial walls, and interlobular septum for evaluating COVID-19.