Minimum intensity projection (MinIP)

Last revised by Andrew Murphy on 30 Mar 2020

Minimum intensity projection (MinIP) is a data visualization method that enables detection of low-density structures in a given volume. The algorithm uses all the data in a volume of interest to generate a single bidimensional image, in other words, it consists of projecting the voxel with the lowest attenuation value on every view throughout the volume onto a 2D image 1,3.

The MinIP algorithm is almost identical to the MIP algorithm but, in the case of MinIP, for each XY coordinate, only the lowest Hounsfield value along the Z axis is represented. In this way, only the most hypodense structures of the volume are represented 1.

So it is the optimal tool for the detection, localization, and quantification of ground-glass opacity, mosaic attenuation, traction bronchiectasis, cystic lung disease and linear attenuation patterns on chest CT 3,4.

The MinIP algorithm is particularly useful for analyzing the bile tree and pancreatic duct, which are hypodense compared to surrounding tissue, especially in the pancreatic and portal phase of contrast agent administration 2.​

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Cases and figures

  • Case 1: normal lungs
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  • Case 2: PCP pneumonia
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