End-to-End Ovarian Structures Segmentation
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The segmentation and characterization of the ovarian structures are important tasks in gynecological and reproductive medicine. Ultrasound imaging is typically used for the medical diagnosis within this field but the understanding of the images can be difficult due to their characteristics. Furthermore, the complexity of ultrasound data may lead to a heavy image processing, which makes the application of classical methods of computer vision difficult. This work presents the first supervised fully convolutional neural network (fCNN) for the automatic segmentation of ovarian structures in B-mode ultrasound images. Due to the small dataset available, only 57 images were used for training. In order to overcome this limitation, several regularization techniques were used and are discussed in this paper. The experiments show the ability of the fCNN to learn features to distinguish ovarian structures, achieving a Dice similarity coefficient (DSC) of 0.855 for the segmentation of the stroma and a DSC of 0.955 for the follicles. When compared with a semi-automatic commercial application for follicle segmentation, the proposed fCNN achieved an average improvement of 19%.
KeywordsOvarian structures segmentation Ultrasound imaging Convolutional neural network (CNN)
This work is financed by the ERDF – European Regional Development Fund through the Operational Programme for Competitiveness and Internationalisation - COMPETE 2020 Programme within project “POCI-01-0145-FEDER-006961”, and by National Funds through the Portuguese funding agency, FCT - Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia as part of project “UID/EEA/50014/2013”.
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