Coronary calcium quantification using various calibration phantoms and scoring thresholds

Maros Ferencik, Ashley Ferullo, Stephan Achenbach, Suhny Abbara, Raymond C. Chan, Sarah L. Booth, Thomas J. Brady, Udo Hoffmann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Rationale and Objectives: To compare scoring threshold and calibration method-dependent accuracy and variability of coronary calcium measurements by multidetector computed tomography (MDCT). Methods: Ninety-five subjects were scanned with MDCT. We calculated Agatston score and volume score. Mineral mass (MM) was calculated using patient-based and scanner-based calibration methods. Accuracy of calibration was validated using artificial calcium cylinders. Results: Patient-based and scanner-based calibration permitted accurate quantification of artificial calcium cylinders (bias: 0 mg and -2 mg). In the subjects, the mean relative difference of MM measurements performed at 90 and 130 Hounsfield units threshold (59%) was lower than for Agatston score (94%) and volume score (109%; P < 0.05). Patient-based and scanner-based calibration yielded systematically different MM measurements (bias: 22%). Conclusions: MM lowers threshold-dependent variability of coronary calcium measurements. Patient-based and scanner-based calibration allows accurate calcium quantification ex vivo but reveal systematic differences in subjects. Patient-based calibration may better account for subject size and composition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)559-566
Number of pages8
JournalInvestigative Radiology
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Calibration phantoms
  • Coronary calcium
  • Multidetector computed tomography
  • Quantification

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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