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Title: Hydrophilic copolymer material characterisation in the mammographic energy region by transmission tomography
Author: Bauk, Sabar
ISNI:       0000 0001 3451 5860
Awarding Body: University of Surrey
Current Institution: University of Surrey
Date of Award: 2000
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Mammographic techniques used for screening programmes need to be of the highest quality; hence, the need of a good phantom to mimic breast response to radiation. The phantom materials must be sensitive to small changes in the mammography system and provide a means of evaluating the absorbed dose to the breast. These materials have to provide the same attenuation properties as the real tissues being simulated, for the radiation modalities being investigated. Cross-linked hydrophilic copolymers have the potential to be good phantom materials for the breast as their elemental compositions are similar to soft tissue. Two types of hydrophilic copolymer materials used in this study were designated as ED1S and ED4C. They were made from a certain proportionate mixture of methyl methacrylate and vinyl pyrrolidone. The physical properties of the materials such as liquid uptake and dimensional changes in hydration and dehydration processes were studied. The equilibrium water content of ED1S and ED4C fully hydrated in water was 55% and 70% respectively. The samples underwent distortion when dehydrated and a volume approximation formula for the dehydrated samples was derived. The linear attenuation coefficient and the mass attenuation coefficient of the hydrophilic copolymer materials at photon energies in the mammographic energy region were determined. Both a single beam transmission method and a photon transmission tomography method were used. The results were compared with XCOM calculated attenuation coefficients of water and average breasts using the elemental composition found in the literature. It was found that the mass attenuation coefficient of dry hydrophilic copolymer samples closely fit the XCOM calculated old-age breast (Breast 3) and samples fully hydrated in water fit the calculated young-age breast (Breast 1). Measurements were also carried out to determine the linear attenuation coefficient of normal and abnormal breast tissues at four photon energies in the mammographic energy region. The values found were in good accord with calculated average breast values. However, more studies need to be done as only three samples were used. The electron density of the hydrophilic copolymer materials was determined by using the Compton scattering technique. The electron density for dry ED1S sample was (3.1 +/- 0.4) x 1023 electrons per cm3 and for dry ED4C was (4.4 +/- 0.4) x 1023 electrons per cm3.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Breast screening; Mammography; Tissue; Phantom