J Neurol Surg B Skull Base 2022; 83(05): 470-475
DOI: 10.1055/s-0041-1741006
Original Article

High-Resolution CT Imaging of the Temporal Bone: A Cadaveric Specimen Study

Nancy Pham
1   Department of Radiology, University of California, Los Angeles, California, United States
Osama Raslan
2   Department of Radiology, University of California, Davis, Sacramento, California, United States
Edward B. Strong
3   Department of Otolaryngology, University of California, Davis, Sacramento, California, United States
John Boone
2   Department of Radiology, University of California, Davis, Sacramento, California, United States
Arthur Dublin
2   Department of Radiology, University of California, Davis, Sacramento, California, United States
Shuai Chen
4   Division of Biostatistics, Department of Public Health Sciences, University of California, Davis, California, United States
Lotfi Hacein-Bey
2   Department of Radiology, University of California, Davis, Sacramento, California, United States
› Author Affiliations


Objective Super-high and ultra-high spatial resolution computed tomography (CT) imaging can be advantageous for detecting temporal bone pathology and guiding treatment strategies.

Methods Six temporal bone cadaveric specimens were used to evaluate the temporal bone microanatomic structures utilizing the following CT reconstruction modes: normal resolution (NR, 0.5-mm slice thickness, 5122 matrix), high resolution (HR, 0.5-mm slice thickness, 1,0242 matrix), super-high resolution (SHR, 0.25-mm slice thickness, 1,0242 matrix), and ultra-high resolution (UHR, 0.25-mm slice thickness, 2,0482 matrix). Noise and signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) for bone and air were measured at each reconstruction mode. Two observers assessed visualization of seven small anatomic structures using a 4-point scale at each reconstruction mode.

Results Noise was significantly higher and SNR significantly lower with increases in spatial resolution (NR, HR, and SHR). There was no statistical difference between SHR and UHR imaging with regard to noise and SNR. There was significantly improved visibility of all temporal bone osseous structures of interest with SHR and UHR imaging relative to NR imaging (p < 0.001) and most of the temporal bone osseous structures relative to HR imaging. There was no statistical difference in the subjective image quality between SHR and UHR imaging of the temporal bone (p ≥ 0.085).

Conclusion Super-high-resolution and ultra-high-resolution CT imaging results in significant improvement in image quality compared with normal-resolution and high-resolution CT imaging of the temporal bone. This preliminary study also demonstrates equivalency between super-high and ultra-high spatial resolution temporal bone CT imaging protocols for clinical use.

Publication History

Received: 19 January 2021

Accepted: 12 November 2021

Article published online:
31 January 2022

© 2022. Thieme. All rights reserved.

Georg Thieme Verlag KG
Rüdigerstraße 14, 70469 Stuttgart, Germany

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