Accurate Airway Wall Estimation Using Phase Congruency

R. San Jose Estepar, George G. Washko, Edwin K. Silverman, John J. Reilly, Ron Kikinis, C.-F. Westin
Ninth International Conference on Medical Image Computing and Computer-Assisted Intervention (MICCAI'06)
Pages 125-134
October, 2006

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Quantitative analysis of computed tomographic (CT) images of the lungs is becoming increasingly useful in the medical and surgical management of subjects with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). Current methods for the assessment of airway wall work well in idealized models of the airway. We propose a new method for airway wall detection based on phase congruency. This method does not rely on either a specific model of the airway or the point spread function of the scanner. Our results show that our method gives a better localization of the airway wall than "full width at a half max" and is less sensitive to different reconstruction kernels and radiation doses.

The detected wall for two unfolded airways are shown. Although we have datasets for each different reconstruction kernel, only the B46f kernel was employed to estimate the wall using FWHM and phase congruency. Unlike the Accurate Airway Wall Estimation Using Phase Congruency 133 previous results, real data has a greater complexity due to surrounding structures that complicate the detection of the outer wall. As it can be easily seen in Figure a, FWHM breaks when trying to detect the outer wall boundary when it is abutting a blood vessel. This is in part because these areas do not fit the model that FWHM was developed for. When looking at airways where the contrast between wall and parenchyma is very subtle, phase congruency shows its superiority with respect to FWHM, as shown in Figure b. FWHM is not able to yield any reliable measure for the outer boundary of the wall. Comparing against the bronze standard, we can say that phase congruency gives an accurate estimation of the wall boundaries.


San Jose Estepar R, Washko GG, Silverman EK, Reilly JJ, Kikinis R, Westin CF. Accurate airway wall estimation using phase congruency. In Ninth International Conference on Medical Image Computing and Computer-Assisted Intervention (MICCAI'06), Lecture Notes in Computer Science 4191. Copenhagen, Denmark, 2006;125-134.

Bibtex entry

  author         = {Raul {San Jose Estepar} and George G. Washko and Edwin K.  
                   Silverman and  John J. Reilly and Ron Kikinis and           
                   Carl-Fredrik Westin},                                       
  title          = {Accurate Airway Wall Estimation Using Phase Congruency},   
  booktitle      = {Ninth International Conference on Medical Image Computing  
                   and Computer-Assisted Intervention (MICCAI'06)},            
  month          = {October},                                                  
  year           = {2006},                                                     
  pages          = {125--134},                                                 
  series         = {Lecture Notes in Computer Science 4191},                   
  address        = {Copenhagen, Denmark}


NIH R01-HL075478, NIH R01-HL68926, NIH P41-RR13218 (NAC)

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