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History of Phantoms
Medical phantoms date back to the beginning of the 20th century. They are commonly defined as structures that contain tissue substitutes and are used to simulate radiation interactions in the human body. In the early 1900s, simple tanks of water and blocks of wax were used for various experiments and to this day these same materials are still used in certain applications.
In the mid-twentieth century more sophisticated tissue substitutes began to appear and today, phantoms are made using a wide variety of materials and processes. There are many different types of phantoms in use today. They can be used for a wide variety of purposes including to measure absorbed radiation dose in a specific geometry, to calibrate radiation detectors, to interpret or correct quantitative information from digital images, to measure image quality and to train radiologic technicians and interventional radiologists.