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13 March 2017 Interactive iterative relative fuzzy connectedness lung segmentation on thoracic 4D dynamic MR images
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Lung delineation via dynamic 4D thoracic magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is necessary for quantitative image analysis for studying pediatric respiratory diseases such as thoracic insufficiency syndrome (TIS). This task is very challenging because of the often-extreme malformations of the thorax in TIS, lack of signal from bone and connective tissues resulting in inadequate image quality, abnormal thoracic dynamics, and the inability of the patients to cooperate with the protocol needed to get good quality images. We propose an interactive fuzzy connectedness approach as a potential practical solution to this difficult problem. Manual segmentation is too labor intensive especially due to the 4D nature of the data and can lead to low repeatability of the segmentation results. Registration-based approaches are somewhat inefficient and may produce inaccurate results due to accumulated registration errors and inadequate boundary information. The proposed approach works in a manner resembling the Iterative Livewire tool but uses iterative relative fuzzy connectedness (IRFC) as the delineation engine. Seeds needed by IRFC are set manually and are propagated from slice-to-slice, decreasing the needed human labor, and then a fuzzy connectedness map is automatically calculated almost instantaneously. If the segmentation is acceptable, the user selects “next” slice. Otherwise, the seeds are refined and the process continues. Although human interaction is needed, an advantage of the method is the high level of efficient user-control on the process and non-necessity to refine the results. Dynamic MRI sequences from 5 pediatric TIS patients involving 39 3D spatial volumes are used to evaluate the proposed approach. The method is compared to two other IRFC strategies with a higher level of automation. The proposed method yields an overall true positive and false positive volume fraction of 0.91 and 0.03, respectively, and Hausdorff boundary distance of 2 mm.
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Yubing Tong, Jayaram K. Udupa, Dewey Odhner, Caiyun Wu, Yue Zhao, Joseph M. McDonough, Anthony Capraro, Drew A. Torigian, and Robert M. Campbell "Interactive iterative relative fuzzy connectedness lung segmentation on thoracic 4D dynamic MR images", Proc. SPIE 10137, Medical Imaging 2017: Biomedical Applications in Molecular, Structural, and Functional Imaging, 1013723 (13 March 2017);

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