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Proceedings Paper

Segmentation of the heart and major vascular structures in cardiovascular CT images
Author(s): J. Peters; O. Ecabert; C. Lorenz; J. von Berg; M. J. Walker; T. B. Ivanc; M. Vembar; M. E. Olszewski; J. Weese
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Paper Abstract

Segmentation of organs in medical images can be successfully performed with shape-constrained deformable models. A surface mesh is attracted to detected image boundaries by an external energy, while an internal energy keeps the mesh similar to expected shapes. Complex organs like the heart with its four chambers can be automatically segmented using a suitable shape variablility model based on piecewise affine degrees of freedom. In this paper, we extend the approach to also segment highly variable vascular structures. We introduce a dedicated framework to adapt an extended mesh model to freely bending vessels. This is achieved by subdividing each vessel into (short) tube-shaped segments ("tubelets"). These are assigned to individual similarity transformations for local orientation and scaling. Proper adaptation is achieved by progressively adapting distal vessel parts to the image only after proximal neighbor tubelets have already converged. In addition, each newly activated tubelet inherits the local orientation and scale of the preceeding one. To arrive at a joint segmentation of chambers and vasculature, we extended a previous model comprising endocardial surfaces of the four chambers, the left ventricular epicardium, and a pulmonary artery trunk. Newly added are the aorta (ascending and descending plus arch), superior and inferior vena cava, coronary sinus, and four pulmonary veins. These vessels are organized as stacks of triangulated rings. This mesh configuration is most suitable to define tubelet segments. On 36 CT data sets reconstructed at several cardiac phases from 17 patients, segmentation accuracies of 0.61-0.80mm are obtained for the cardiac chambers. For the visible parts of the newly added great vessels, surface accuracies of 0.47-1.17mm are obtained (larger errors are asscociated with faintly contrasted venous structures).

Paper Details

Date Published: 11 March 2008
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 6914, Medical Imaging 2008: Image Processing, 691417 (11 March 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.768494
Show Author Affiliations
J. Peters, Philips Research Europe - Aachen (Germany)
O. Ecabert, Philips Research Europe - Aachen (Germany)
C. Lorenz, Philips Research Europe - Hamburg (Germany)
J. von Berg, Philips Research Europe - Hamburg (Germany)
M. J. Walker, Philips Healthcare, CT Clinical Science (United States)
T. B. Ivanc, Philips Healthcare, CT Clinical Science (United States)
M. Vembar, Philips Healthcare, CT Clinical Science (United States)
M. E. Olszewski, Philips Healthcare, CT Clinical Science (United States)
J. Weese, Philips Research Europe - Aachen (Germany)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6914:
Medical Imaging 2008: Image Processing
Joseph M. Reinhardt; Josien P. W. Pluim, Editor(s)

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