Keywords: Multiple residual feature streams, thoracic normal organs, AAPM thoracic grand challenge dataset
TL;DR: We present a multi-organ segmentation method for five structures of varying sizes in the thorax using multiple resolution residually connected feature streams that shows improvements over current methods for auto-segmentation of normal organs.
Track: short paper
Paper Type: well-validated application
Abstract: We implemented and evaluated a multiple resolution residual network (MRRN) for multiple normal organs-at-risk (OAR) segmentation from computed tomography (CT) images for thoracic radiotherapy treatment (RT) planning. Our approach simultaneously combines feature streams computed at multiple image resolutions and feature levels through residual connections. The feature streams at each level are updated as the images are passed through various feature levels. We trained our approach using 206 thoracic CT scans of lung cancer patients with 35 scans held out for validation to segment the left and right lungs, heart, esophagus, and spinal cord. This approach was tested on the 60 CT scans from the open-source AAPM Thoracic Auto-Segmentation Challenge dataset. Performance was measured using the Dice Similarity Coefficient (DSC). Our approach outperformed the best-performing method in the grand challenge for hard-to-segment structures like the esophagus and achieved comparable results for all other structures. Median DSC using our method was 0.97 (interquartile range [IQR]: 0.97-0.98) for the left and right lungs, 0.93 (IQR: 0.93-0.95) for the heart, 0.78 (IQR: 0.76-0.80) for the esophagus, and 0.88 (IQR: 0.86-0.89) for the spinal cord.
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