A Comparative Study Towards the Establishment of an Automatic Retinal Vessel Width Measurement Technique

  • Fan HuangEmail author
  • Behdad Dashtbozorg
  • Alexander Ka Shing Yeung
  • Jiong Zhang
  • Tos T. J. M. Berendschot
  • Bart M. ter Haar Romeny
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 10554)


In this paper, we propose an automatic technique for the assessment of retinal vessel caliber in fundus images using a fully automatic technique exploiting a multi-scale active contour technique. The proposed method is compared with the well-known semi-automated IVAN software and the Vampire width annotation tool. Experimental results show that our approach is able to provide fast and fully automatic caliber measurements with similar caliber measurement and comparable system error as the IVAN software. It will benefit the analysis of quantitative retinal vessel caliber measurements in large-scale screening programs.


Vessel width Arteriolar-to-venular ratio Fundus images Active contour Diabetes 



The work is part of the Hé Programme of Innovation Cooperation, which is financed by the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO), dossier No. 629.001.003.


  1. 1.
    Caselles, V., Kimmel, R., Sapiro, G.: Geodesic active contours. Int. J. Comput. Vision 22(1), 61–79 (1997)CrossRefzbMATHGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Dashtbozorg, B., Zhang, J., Huang, F., ter Haar Romeny, B.M.: Automatic optic disc and fovea detection in retinal images using super-elliptical convergence index filters. In: Campilho, A., Karray, F. (eds.) ICIAR 2016. LNCS, vol. 9730, pp. 697–706. Springer, Cham (2016). doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-41501-7_78 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Drobnjak, D., Munch, I.C., Glümer, C., Faerch, K., Kessel, L., Larsen, M., Veiby, N.C.: Retinal vessel diameters and their relationship with cardiovascular risk and all-cause mortality in the inter99 eye study: a 15-year follow-up. J. Ophthalmol. 2016, 1–8 (2016)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Frydkjaer-Olsen, U., Soegaard Hansen, R., Simó, R., Cunha-Vaz, J., Peto, T., Grauslund, J., et al.: Correlation between retinal vessel calibre and neurodegeneration in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus in the european consortium for the early treatment of diabetic retinopathy (eurocondor). Ophthalmic Res. 56(1), 10–16 (2016)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Hubbard, L.D., Brothers, R.J., King, W.N., Clegg, L.X., Klein, R., Cooper, L.S., Sharrett, A.R., Davis, M.D., Cai, J., Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study Group, et al.: Methods for evaluation of retinal microvascular abnormalities associated with hypertension/sclerosis in the atherosclerosis risk in communities study. Ophthalmology 106(12), 2269–2280 (1999)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Knudtson, M.D., Lee, K.E., Hubbard, L.D., Wong, T.Y., Klein, R., Klein, B.E.: Revised formulas for summarizing retinal vessel diameters. Curr. Eye Res. 27(3), 143–149 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Neubauer, A.S., Luedtke, M., Haritoglou, C., Priglinger, S., Kampik, A.: Retinal vessel analysis reproducibility in assessing cardiovascular disease. Optom. Vis. Sci. 85(4), E247–E254 (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Nguyen, T.T., Wong, T.Y.: Retinal vascular changes and diabetic retinopathy. Curr. Diab.Rep. 9(4), 277–283 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Perez-Rovira, A., MacGillivray, T., Trucco, E., Chin, K., Zutis, K., Lupascu, C., Tegolo, D., Giachetti, A., Wilson, P., Doney, A., et al.: Vampire: vessel assessment and measurement platform for images of the retina. In: 2011 Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, EMBC, pp. 3391–3394. IEEE (2011)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Shin, Y.U., Lee, S.E., Cho, H., Kang, M.H., Seong, M.: Analysis of peripapillary retinal vessel diameter in unilateral normal-tension glaucoma. J. Ophthalmol. 2017, 1–7 (2017)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Sun, C., Wang, J.J., Mackey, D.A., Wong, T.Y.: Retinal vascular caliber: systemic, environmental, and genetic associations. Surv. Ophthalmol. 54(1), 74–95 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Zhang, J., Bekkers, E., Abbasi, S., Dashtbozorg, B., ter Haar Romeny, B.M.: Robust and fast vessel segmentation via Gaussian derivatives in orientation scores. In: Murino, V., Puppo, E. (eds.) ICIAP 2015. LNCS, vol. 9279, pp. 537–547. Springer, Cham (2015). doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-23231-7_48 CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Fan Huang
    • 1
    Email author
  • Behdad Dashtbozorg
    • 1
  • Alexander Ka Shing Yeung
    • 2
  • Jiong Zhang
    • 1
  • Tos T. J. M. Berendschot
    • 2
  • Bart M. ter Haar Romeny
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Biomedical EngineeringEindhoven University of TechnologyEindhovenThe Netherlands
  2. 2.University Eye Clinic MaastrichtMaastrichtThe Netherlands
  3. 3.Department of Biomedical and Information EngineeringNortheastern UniversityShenyangChina

Personalised recommendations