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Comparison of different machine learning approaches to detect femoral neck fractures in x-ray images

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Abstract

Femoral neck fractures are a serious health problem, especially in the elderly population. Misdiagnosis leads to improper treatment and adversely affects the quality of life of the patients. On the other hand, when looking from the perspective of orthopedic surgeons, their workload increases during the pandemic, and the rates of correct diagnosis may decrease with fatigue. Therefore, it becomes essential to help healthcare professionals diagnose correctly and facilitate treatment planning. The main purpose of this study is to develop a framework to detect fractured femoral necks in PXRs (Pelvic X-ray, Pelvic Radiographs) while also researching how different machine learning approaches affect different data distributions. Conventional, LBP (Local Binary Patterns), and HOG (Histogram of Gradients) features were extracted manually from gray-level images to feed the canonical machine learning classifiers. Gray-level and three-channel images were used as inputs to extract the features automatically by CNNs (Convolutional Neural Network). LSTMs (Long Short-Term Memory) and BILSTMs (Bidirectional Long Short-Term Memory) were fed by automatically extracted features. Metaheuristic optimization algorithms, GA (Genetic Algorithm) and PSO (Particle Swarm Optimization), were utilized to optimize hyper-parameters such as the number of the feature maps and the size of the filters in the convolutional layers of the CNN architecture. The majority voting was applied to the results of the different classifiers. For the imbalanced dataset, the best performance was achieved by the 2-layer LSTM architecture that used features extracted from the fifth max-pooling layer of the CNN architecture optimized by GA. For the balanced dataset, the best performance was obtained by the CNN architecture optimized by PSO in terms of the Kappa evaluation metric. Although metaheuristic optimization algorithms such as GA and PSO do not guarantee the optimal solution, they can improve the performance on a not extremely imbalanced dataset especially in terms of sensitivity and Kappa evaluation metrics. On the other hand, for a balanced dataset, more reliable results can be obtained without using metaheuristic optimization algorithms but including them can result in an acceptable agreement in terms of the Kappa metric.

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Correspondence to Koray Açıcı.

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Açıcı, K., Sümer, E. & Beyaz, S. Comparison of different machine learning approaches to detect femoral neck fractures in x-ray images. Health Technol. 11, 643–653 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12553-021-00543-9

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