Are you looking to reduce imaging radiation dose for your vulnerable, neonatal patients? Then pay close attention to your image processing!

When we talk about “low dose”, we really mean “right dose”: making images with the diagnostic quality needed for correct interpretation, while using the lowest possible dose.

A recent study published in Pediatric Radiology showed that image processing methods significantly impact perceived image quality, including diagnostic quality. These image quality differences can be exploited to alter protocols so that images of equivalent quality are produced at lower doses.

The study tested two types of image processing software – Agfa’s MUSICA Neonatal and another vendor’s image processing, with the recommended settings for neonatal images. Using the same detector and X-ray source for the images ensured that any image quality differences weren’t caused by the modalities.

High-quality images at lower dose

15 different dose levels were tested. The images were then assessed by radiologists, both for rating and matching. The result? The radiologists rated the neonatal images processed with MUSICA Neonatal higher for image quality, at the same effective dose. What’s more, only 7% of the MUSICA images were given a ‘non-diagnostic quality’ rating, compared to 19% of the images from the other image processing!

When matching, the radiologists also found that MUSICA Neonatal-processed images gave equivalent image quality at a lower effective dose than the other image processing.

The study concluded that image processing methods significantly impact perceived image quality, and MUSICA Neonatal processing provides better diagnostic quality over a wider range of doses than the competitive image processing software.

Perhaps even more importantly, it showed that because of these image quality differences, protocols could be adapted to provide images with the same quality – at lower dose. So, make sure you don’t underestimate the impact of image processing on dose management and reduction!

MUSICA Neonatal

  • MUSICA Neonatal offers special, dedicated functions such as optimal balance of soft bone, lung and abdominal tissue in one neonatal image.
  • Body-part-independent, MUSICA offers consistently high image quality across CR & DR solutions.
  • It uses a multi-scale, layered representation of an image enabling simple and precise control over many aspects of your image’s look.
  • Using Fractional Multiscale Reconstruction (FMR) it presents grayscale differences in a more natural way, without artifacts, and eliminates the need for window leveling.


Read the Executive Summary of the report as published in Pediatric Radiology: