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Automatic segmentation of prostate MRI using convolutional neural networks: Investigating the impact of network architecture on the accuracy of volume measurement and MRI-ultrasound registration

Ghavami, N; Hu, Y; Gibson, E; Bonmati, E; Emberton, M; Moore, CM; Barratt, DC; (2019) Automatic segmentation of prostate MRI using convolutional neural networks: Investigating the impact of network architecture on the accuracy of volume measurement and MRI-ultrasound registration. Medical Image Analysis , 58 , Article 101558. 10.1016/j.media.2019.101558. Green open access

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Abstract

Convolutional neural networks (CNNs) have recently led to significant advances in automatic segmentations of anatomical structures in medical images, and a wide variety of network architectures are now available to the research community. For applications such as segmentation of the prostate in magnetic resonance images (MRI), the results of the PROMISE12 online algorithm evaluation platform have demonstrated differences between the best-performing segmentation algorithms in terms of numerical accuracy using standard metrics such as the Dice score and boundary distance. These small differences in the segmented regions/boundaries outputted by different algorithms may potentially have an unsubstantial impact on the results of downstream image analysis tasks, such as estimating organ volume and multimodal image registration, which inform clinical decisions. This impact has not been previously investigated. In this work, we quantified the accuracy of six different CNNs in segmenting the prostate in 3D patient T2-weighted MRI scans and compared the accuracy of organ volume estimation and MRI-ultrasound (US) registration errors using the prostate segmentations produced by different networks. Networks were trained and tested using a set of 232 patient MRIs with labels provided by experienced clinicians. A statistically significant difference was found among the Dice scores and boundary distances produced by these networks in a non-parametric analysis of variance (p < 0.001 and p < 0.001, respectively), where the following multiple comparison tests revealed that the statistically significant difference in segmentation errors were caused by at least one tested network. Gland volume errors (GVEs) and target registration errors (TREs) were then estimated using the CNN-generated segmentations. Interestingly, there was no statistical difference found in either GVEs or TREs among different networks, (p = 0.34 and p = 0.26, respectively). This result provides a real-world example that these networks with different segmentation performances may potentially provide indistinguishably adequate registration accuracies to assist prostate cancer imaging applications. We conclude by recommending that the differences in the accuracy of downstream image analysis tasks that make use of data output by automatic segmentation methods, such as CNNs, within a clinical pipeline should be taken into account when selecting between different network architectures, in addition to reporting the segmentation accuracy.

Type: Article
Title: Automatic segmentation of prostate MRI using convolutional neural networks: Investigating the impact of network architecture on the accuracy of volume measurement and MRI-ultrasound registration
Location: Netherlands
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.media.2019.101558
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.media.2019.101558
Language: English
Additional information: This is an open access article under the CC BY license. (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Keywords: MRI, Medical image segmentation, Neural networks, Prostate cancer
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Surgery and Interventional Sci
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Surgery and Interventional Sci > Department of Targeted Intervention
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Med Phys and Biomedical Eng
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10082295
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