Segmentation of cardiac tagged MR images using a snake model based on hybrid gradient vector flow
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In the segmentation of cardiac tagging magnetic resonance (tMR) images, it is difficult to segment the left ventricle automatically by using the traditional segmentation model because of the interference caused by the tags. A new snake model based on hybrid gradient vector flow (HGVF) is proposed by us to improve this segmentation. Due to the different characteristics between endocardium and epicardium of the left ventricle (LV), several gradient vector flows (GVFs) with distinctive boundary information would be fused to segment these two sub regions individually. For segmentation of endocardium, we construct a new HGVF in snake model fused by three independent GVFs. These flows are respectively exported from the original cardiac tMR image, the tags-removed image and the local-filtered image. On the other hand, since the epicardium is with a nearly-circle shape, we construct the other HGVF which is composed of two different GVFs. One of them is derived from the tags-removed image either and the other one is derived from the ideal circle-shape image. Some experiments have been done to validate our new segmentation model. The average overlap of the endocardium segmentation is 89.67% (its mean absolute distance is 1.86 pixels), and the average overlap of the epicardium segmentation is 95.88% (its mean absolute distance is 1.64 pixels). Experimental results show that the proposed method improves the segmentation performance compared to some available methods effectively.
KeywordsThe segmentation of left ventricle Tagging magnetic resonance image Notch bandstop filtering GVF snake
We would like to thank Tongji Hospital, affiliated with Huazhong University of Science and Technology, for providing the experimental datasets used in this study and for offering useful medical suggestions.
This research was funded by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 61602519); Ministry of Education of China (MOE) Project of Humanities and Social Sciences (Project No. 16YJC860026); China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (Grant No. 2013M542021); China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (Grant No.2014M562026); the Natural Science Foundation of Hubei Province, China (Grant No. 2013CFC090); the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities, Zhongnan University of Economics and Law (Grant No. 2012096).
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