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Monte Carlo methods are used to evaluate data methods such as scatter and attenuation compensation in single photon emission CT (SPECT), treatment planning in radiation therapy, and in many industrial applications. In Monte Carlo simulation, photon transport requires calculating the distance from the location of the emitted photon to the nearest boundary of each uniform attenuating medium along its path of travel, and comparing this distance with the length of its path generated at emission. Here, the authors propose a new method that omits the calculation of the location of the exit point of the photon from each voxel and of the distance between the exit point and the original position. The method only checks the medium of each voxel along the photon's path. If the medium differs from that in the voxel from which the photon was emitted, the authors calculate the location of the entry point in the voxel, and the length of the path is compared with the mean free path length generated by a random number. Simulations using the MCAT phantom show that the ratios of the calculation time were 1.0 for the voxel-based method, and 0.51 for the proposed method with a 256/spl times/256/spl times/256 matrix image, thereby confirming the effectiveness of the algorithm.