Journal of Digital Imaging

, Volume 26, Issue 2, pp 163–172 | Cite as

Evaluation of Precision and Accuracy Assessment of Different 3-D Surface Imaging Systems for Biomedical Purposes

  • Maximilian Eder
  • Gernot Brockmann
  • Alexander Zimmermann
  • Moschos A. Papadopoulos
  • Katja Schwenzer-Zimmerer
  • Hans Florian Zeilhofer
  • Robert Sader
  • Nikolaos A. Papadopulos
  • Laszlo Kovacs


Three-dimensional (3-D) surface imaging has gained clinical acceptance, especially in the field of cranio-maxillo-facial and plastic, reconstructive, and aesthetic surgery. Six scanners based on different scanning principles (Minolta Vivid 910®, Polhemus FastSCAN™, GFM PRIMOS®, GFM TopoCAM®, Steinbichler Comet® Vario Zoom 250, 3dMD DSP 400®) were used to measure five sheep skulls of different sizes. In three areas with varying anatomical complexity (areas, 1 = high; 2 = moderate; 3 = low), 56 distances between 20 landmarks are defined on each skull. Manual measurement (MM), coordinate machine measurements (CMM) and computer tomography (CT) measurements were used to define a reference method for further precision and accuracy evaluation of different 3-D scanning systems. MM showed high correlation to CMM and CT measurements (both r = 0.987; p < 0.001) and served as the reference method. TopoCAM®, Comet® and Vivid 910® showed highest measurement precision over all areas of complexity; Vivid 910®, the Comet® and the DSP 400® demonstrated highest accuracy over all areas with Vivid 910® being most accurate in areas 1 and 3, and the DSP 400® most accurate in area 2. In accordance to the measured distance length, most 3-D devices present higher measurement precision and accuracy for large distances and lower degrees of precision and accuracy for short distances. In general, higher degrees of complexity are associated with lower 3-D assessment accuracy, suggesting that for optimal results, different types of scanners should be applied to specific clinical applications and medical problems according to their special construction designs and characteristics.


Accuracy Biomedical Fringe projection Laser scanning Precision Stereo-photogrammetry Surface imaging 3D 


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Copyright information

© Society for Imaging Informatics in Medicine 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Maximilian Eder
    • 1
  • Gernot Brockmann
    • 1
  • Alexander Zimmermann
    • 2
  • Moschos A. Papadopoulos
    • 3
  • Katja Schwenzer-Zimmerer
    • 4
  • Hans Florian Zeilhofer
    • 4
  • Robert Sader
    • 5
  • Nikolaos A. Papadopulos
    • 1
  • Laszlo Kovacs
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Plastic Surgery and Hand SurgeryKlinikum rechts der Isar, Technische Universität MünchenMünchenGermany
  2. 2.Department of Vascular SurgeryKlinikum rechts der Isar, Technische Universität MünchenMünchenGermany
  3. 3.Department of Orthodontics, School of DentistryAristotle University of ThessalonikiThessalonikiGreece
  4. 4.Division of Cranio-maxillo-facial Surgery, Department of Reconstructive SurgeryUniversity of BaselBaselSwitzerland
  5. 5.Department of Oral, Maxillofacial, and Plastic Facial SurgeryGoethe Universität FrankfurtFrankfurt am MainGermany

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