The Role of Dual-Energy Computed Tomography in Musculoskeletal Imaging

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Abstract

Dual-energy computed tomography (DECT) enables material decomposition and virtual monochromatic images by acquiring 2 different energy X-ray data sets. DECT can detect musculoskeletal pathologic conditions that CT alone cannot, and that would otherwise require MR imaging. In this review, the authors discuss several useful techniques and applications of DECT in musculoskeletal research: virtual monochromatic images, virtual noncalcium images, gout, iodine map, and tendons.

KEY POINTS
 Dual-energy computed tomography (DECT) can reduce beam hardening artifacts by synthesizing a
virtual monochromatic image and enables detailed evaluation of prosthetic complications.
 DECT can display monosodium urate crystal deposition, which helps to make a correct diagnosis in
atypical gout and precise therapeutic assessment.
 DECT iodine maps can delineate soft tissue inflammation of arthritis and may be beneficial for
evaluating peripheral joints because of its high spatial resolution.

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