Statistical characterization of radiological images: Basic principles and recent progress

Harrison H. Barrett, Kyle J. Myers

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

4 Scopus citations


This paper surveys our current understanding of the statistical properties of radiological images and their effect on image quality. Attention is given to statistical descriptions needed to compute the performance of ideal or ideal-linear observers on detection and estimation tasks. The effects of measurement noise, random objects and random imaging system are analyzed by nested conditional averaging, leading to a three-term expansion of the data covariance matrix. Characteristic functionals are introduced to account for the object statistics, and it is shown how they can be used to compute the image statistics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationMedical Imaging 2007
Subtitle of host publicationPhysics of Medical Imaging
EditionPART 1
StatePublished - 2007
EventMedical Imaging 2007: Physics of Medical Imaging - San Diego, CA, United States
Duration: Feb 18 2007Feb 22 2007

Publication series

NameProgress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging - Proceedings of SPIE
NumberPART 1
ISSN (Print)1605-7422


OtherMedical Imaging 2007: Physics of Medical Imaging
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego, CA


  • Covariance
  • Detection
  • Hotelling observer
  • Image quality
  • Wiener estimator

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Biomaterials
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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