Segment anything model (SAM) has emerged as the leading approach for zero-shot learning in segmentation, offering the advantage of avoiding pixel-wise annotation. It is particularly appealing in medical image segmentation where annotation is laborious and expertise-demanding. However, the direct application of SAM often yields inferior results compared to conventional fully supervised segmentation networks. While using SAM generated pseudo label could also benefit the training of fully supervised segmentation, the performance is limited by the quality of pseudo labels. In this paper, we propose a novel label corruption to push the boundary of SAM-based segmentation. Our model utilizes a novel noise detection module to distinguish between noisy labels from clean labels. This enables us to correct the noisy labels using an uncertainty-based self-correction module, thereby enriching the clean training set. Finally, we retrain the network with updated labels to optimize its weights for future predictions. One key advantage of our model is its ability to train deep networks using SAM-generated pseudo labels without relying on a subset of expert-level annotations. We demonstrate the effectiveness of our proposed model on both X-ray and lung CT datasets, indicating its ability to improve segmentation accuracy and outperform baseline methods in label correction.
Automatically identifying the structural substrates underlying cardiac abnormalities can potentially provide real-time guidance for interventional procedures. With the knowledge of cardiac tissue substrates, the treatment of complex arrhythmias such as atrial fibrillation and ventricular tachycardia can be further optimized by detecting arrhythmia substrates to target for treatment (i.e., adipose) and identifying critical structures to avoid. Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is a real-time imaging modality that aids in addressing this need. Existing approaches for cardiac image analysis mainly rely on fully supervised learning techniques, which suffer from the drawback of workload on labor-intensive annotation process of pixel-wise labeling. To lessen the need for pixel-wise labeling, we develop a two-stage deep learning framework for cardiac adipose tissue segmentation using image-level annotations on OCT images of human cardiac substrates. In particular, we integrate class activation mapping with superpixel segmentation to solve the sparse tissue seed challenge raised in cardiac tissue segmentation. Our study bridges the gap between the demand on automatic tissue analysis and the lack of high-quality pixel-wise annotations. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study that attempts to address cardiac tissue segmentation on OCT images via weakly supervised learning techniques. Within an in-vitro human cardiac OCT dataset, we demonstrate that our weakly supervised approach on image-level annotations achieves comparable performance as fully supervised methods trained on pixel-wise annotations.
Machine learning has been widely adopted for medical image analysis in recent years given its promising performance in image segmentation and classification tasks. The success of machine learning, in particular supervised learning, depends on the availability of manually annotated datasets. For medical imaging applications, such annotated datasets are not easy to acquire, it takes a substantial amount of time and resource to curate an annotated medical image set. In this paper, we propose an efficient annotation framework for brain MR images that can suggest informative sample images for human experts to annotate. We evaluate the framework on two different brain image analysis tasks, namely brain tumour segmentation and whole brain segmentation. Experiments show that for brain tumour segmentation task on the BraTS 2019 dataset, training a segmentation model with only 7% suggestively annotated image samples can achieve a performance comparable to that of training on the full dataset. For whole brain segmentation on the MALC dataset, training with 42% suggestively annotated image samples can achieve a comparable performance to training on the full dataset. The proposed framework demonstrates a promising way to save manual annotation cost and improve data efficiency in medical imaging applications.
Deep learning (DL) models have provided the state-of-the-art performance in a wide variety of medical imaging benchmarking challenges, including the Brain Tumor Segmentation (BraTS) challenges. However, the task of focal pathology multi-compartment segmentation (e.g., tumor and lesion sub-regions) is particularly challenging, and potential errors hinder the translation of DL models into clinical workflows. Quantifying the reliability of DL model predictions in the form of uncertainties, could enable clinical review of the most uncertain regions, thereby building trust and paving the way towards clinical translation. Recently, a number of uncertainty estimation methods have been introduced for DL medical image segmentation tasks. Developing metrics to evaluate and compare the performance of uncertainty measures will assist the end-user in making more informed decisions. In this study, we explore and evaluate a metric developed during the BraTS 2019-2020 task on uncertainty quantification (QU-BraTS), and designed to assess and rank uncertainty estimates for brain tumor multi-compartment segmentation. This metric (1) rewards uncertainty estimates that produce high confidence in correct assertions, and those that assign low confidence levels at incorrect assertions, and (2) penalizes uncertainty measures that lead to a higher percentages of under-confident correct assertions. We further benchmark the segmentation uncertainties generated by 14 independent participating teams of QU-BraTS 2020, all of which also participated in the main BraTS segmentation task. Overall, our findings confirm the importance and complementary value that uncertainty estimates provide to segmentation algorithms, and hence highlight the need for uncertainty quantification in medical image analyses. Our evaluation code is made publicly available at https://github.com/RagMeh11/QU-BraTS.
Unsupervised learning-based medical image registration approaches have witnessed rapid development in recent years. We propose to revisit a commonly ignored while simple and well-established principle: recursive refinement of deformation vector fields across scales. We introduce a recursive refinement network (RRN) for unsupervised medical image registration, to extract multi-scale features, construct normalized local cost correlation volume and recursively refine volumetric deformation vector fields. RRN achieves state of the art performance for 3D registration of expiratory-inspiratory pairs of CT lung scans. On DirLab COPDGene dataset, RRN returns an average Target Registration Error (TRE) of 0.83 mm, which corresponds to a 13% error reduction from the best result presented in the leaderboard. In addition to comparison with conventional methods, RRN leads to 89% error reduction compared to deep-learning-based peer approaches.
Supervised deep learning performance is heavily tied to the availability of high-quality labels for training. Neural networks can gradually overfit corrupted labels if directly trained on noisy datasets, leading to severe performance degradation at test time. In this paper, we propose a novel deep learning framework, namely Co-Seg, to collaboratively train segmentation networks on datasets which include low-quality noisy labels. Our approach first trains two networks simultaneously to sift through all samples and obtain a subset with reliable labels. Then, an efficient yet easily-implemented label correction strategy is applied to enrich the reliable subset. Finally, using the updated dataset, we retrain the segmentation network to finalize its parameters. Experiments in two noisy labels scenarios demonstrate that our proposed model can achieve results comparable to those obtained from supervised learning trained on the noise-free labels. In addition, our framework can be easily implemented in any segmentation algorithm to increase its robustness to noisy labels.
Machine learning has been widely adopted for medical image analysis in recent years given its promising performance in image segmentation and classification tasks. As a data-driven science, the success of machine learning, in particular supervised learning, largely depends on the availability of manually annotated datasets. For medical imaging applications, such annotated datasets are not easy to acquire. It takes a substantial amount of time and resource to curate an annotated medical image set. In this paper, we propose an efficient annotation framework for brain tumour images that is able to suggest informative sample images for human experts to annotate. Our experiments show that training a segmentation model with only 19% suggestively annotated patient scans from BraTS 2019 dataset can achieve a comparable performance to training a model on the full dataset for whole tumour segmentation task. It demonstrates a promising way to save manual annotation cost and improve data efficiency in medical imaging applications.
Three-dimensional late gadolinium enhanced (LGE) cardiac MR (CMR) of left atrial scar in patients with atrial fibrillation (AF) has recently emerged as a promising technique to stratify patients, to guide ablation therapy and to predict treatment success. This requires a segmentation of the high intensity scar tissue and also a segmentation of the left atrium (LA) anatomy, the latter usually being derived from a separate bright-blood acquisition. Performing both segmentations automatically from a single 3D LGE CMR acquisition would eliminate the need for an additional acquisition and avoid subsequent registration issues. In this paper, we propose a joint segmentation method based on multiview two-task (MVTT) recursive attention model working directly on 3D LGE CMR images to segment the LA (and proximal pulmonary veins) and to delineate the scar on the same dataset. Using our MVTT recursive attention model, both the LA anatomy and scar can be segmented accurately (mean Dice score of 93% for the LA anatomy and 87% for the scar segmentations) and efficiently (~0.27 seconds to simultaneously segment the LA anatomy and scars directly from the 3D LGE CMR dataset with 60-68 2D slices). Compared to conventional unsupervised learning and other state-of-the-art deep learning based methods, the proposed MVTT model achieved excellent results, leading to an automatic generation of a patient-specific anatomical model combined with scar segmentation for patients in AF.
Gliomas are the most common malignant brain tumourswith intrinsic heterogeneity. Accurate segmentation of gliomas and theirsub-regions on multi-parametric magnetic resonance images (mpMRI)is of great clinical importance, which defines tumour size, shape andappearance and provides abundant information for preoperative diag-nosis, treatment planning and survival prediction. Recent developmentson deep learning have significantly improved the performance of auto-mated medical image segmentation. In this paper, we compare severalstate-of-the-art convolutional neural network models for brain tumourimage segmentation. Based on the ensembled segmentation, we presenta biophysics-guided prognostic model for patient overall survival predic-tion which outperforms a data-driven radiomics approach. Our methodwon the second place of the MICCAI 2019 BraTS Challenge for theoverall survival prediction.