This technical report provides a detailed overview of Endoscapes, a dataset of laparoscopic cholecystectomy (LC) videos with highly intricate annotations targeted at automated assessment of the Critical View of Safety (CVS). Endoscapes comprises 201 LC videos with frames annotated sparsely but regularly with segmentation masks, bounding boxes, and CVS assessment by three different clinical experts. Altogether, there are 11090 frames annotated with CVS and 1933 frames annotated with tool and anatomy bounding boxes from the 201 videos, as well as an additional 422 frames from 50 of the 201 videos annotated with tool and anatomy segmentation masks. In this report, we provide detailed dataset statistics (size, class distribution, dataset splits, etc.) and a comprehensive performance benchmark for instance segmentation, object detection, and CVS prediction. The dataset and model checkpoints are publically available at https://github.com/CAMMA-public/Endoscapes.
Surgical robotics holds much promise for improving patient safety and clinician experience in the Operating Room (OR). However, it also comes with new challenges, requiring strong team coordination and effective OR management. Automatic detection of surgical activities is a key requirement for developing AI-based intelligent tools to tackle these challenges. The current state-of-the-art surgical activity recognition methods however operate on image-based representations and depend on large-scale labeled datasets whose collection is time-consuming and resource-expensive. This work proposes a new sample-efficient and object-based approach for surgical activity recognition in the OR. Our method focuses on the geometric arrangements between clinicians and surgical devices, thus utilizing the significant object interaction dynamics in the OR. We conduct experiments in a low-data regime study for long video activity recognition. We also benchmark our method againstother object-centric approaches on clip-level action classification and show superior performance.
Most studies on surgical activity recognition utilizing Artificial intelligence (AI) have focused mainly on recognizing one type of activity from small and mono-centric surgical video datasets. It remains speculative whether those models would generalize to other centers. In this work, we introduce a large multi-centric multi-activity dataset consisting of 140 videos (MultiBypass140) of laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (LRYGB) surgeries performed at two medical centers: the University Hospital of Strasbourg (StrasBypass70) and Inselspital, Bern University Hospital (BernBypass70). The dataset has been fully annotated with phases and steps. Furthermore, we assess the generalizability and benchmark different deep learning models in 7 experimental studies: 1) Training and evaluation on BernBypass70; 2) Training and evaluation on StrasBypass70; 3) Training and evaluation on the MultiBypass140; 4) Training on BernBypass70, evaluation on StrasBypass70; 5) Training on StrasBypass70, evaluation on BernBypass70; Training on MultiBypass140, evaluation 6) on BernBypass70 and 7) on StrasBypass70. The model's performance is markedly influenced by the training data. The worst results were obtained in experiments 4) and 5) confirming the limited generalization capabilities of models trained on mono-centric data. The use of multi-centric training data, experiments 6) and 7), improves the generalization capabilities of the models, bringing them beyond the level of independent mono-centric training and validation (experiments 1) and 2)). MultiBypass140 shows considerable variation in surgical technique and workflow of LRYGB procedures between centers. Therefore, generalization experiments demonstrate a remarkable difference in model performance. These results highlight the importance of multi-centric datasets for AI model generalization to account for variance in surgical technique and workflows.
Modern operating room is becoming increasingly complex, requiring innovative intra-operative support systems. While the focus of surgical data science has largely been on video analysis, integrating surgical computer vision with language capabilities is emerging as a necessity. Our work aims to advance Visual Question Answering (VQA) in the surgical context with scene graph knowledge, addressing two main challenges in the current surgical VQA systems: removing question-condition bias in the surgical VQA dataset and incorporating scene-aware reasoning in the surgical VQA model design. First, we propose a Surgical Scene Graph-based dataset, SSG-QA, generated by employing segmentation and detection models on publicly available datasets. We build surgical scene graphs using spatial and action information of instruments and anatomies. These graphs are fed into a question engine, generating diverse QA pairs. Our SSG-QA dataset provides a more complex, diverse, geometrically grounded, unbiased, and surgical action-oriented dataset compared to existing surgical VQA datasets. We then propose SSG-QA-Net, a novel surgical VQA model incorporating a lightweight Scene-embedded Interaction Module (SIM), which integrates geometric scene knowledge in the VQA model design by employing cross-attention between the textual and the scene features. Our comprehensive analysis of the SSG-QA dataset shows that SSG-QA-Net outperforms existing methods across different question types and complexities. We highlight that the primary limitation in the current surgical VQA systems is the lack of scene knowledge to answer complex queries. We present a novel surgical VQA dataset and model and show that results can be significantly improved by incorporating geometric scene features in the VQA model design. The source code and the dataset will be made publicly available at: https://github.com/CAMMA-public/SSG-QA
This technical report presents MOSaiC 3.6.2, a web-based collaborative platform designed for the annotation and evaluation of medical videos. MOSaiC is engineered to facilitate video-based assessment and accelerate surgical data science projects. We provide an overview of MOSaiC's key functionalities, encompassing group and video management, annotation tools, ontologies, assessment capabilities, and user administration. Finally, we briefly describe several medical data science studies where MOSaiC has been instrumental in the dataset development.
Tool tracking in surgical videos is vital in computer-assisted intervention for tasks like surgeon skill assessment, safety zone estimation, and human-machine collaboration during minimally invasive procedures. The lack of large-scale datasets hampers Artificial Intelligence implementation in this domain. Current datasets exhibit overly generic tracking formalization, often lacking surgical context: a deficiency that becomes evident when tools move out of the camera's scope, resulting in rigid trajectories that hinder realistic surgical representation. This paper addresses the need for a more precise and adaptable tracking formalization tailored to the intricacies of endoscopic procedures by introducing CholecTrack20, an extensive dataset meticulously annotated for multi-class multi-tool tracking across three perspectives representing the various ways of considering the temporal duration of a tool trajectory: (1) intraoperative, (2) intracorporeal, and (3) visibility within the camera's scope. The dataset comprises 20 laparoscopic videos with over 35,000 frames and 65,000 annotated tool instances with details on spatial location, category, identity, operator, phase, and surgical visual conditions. This detailed dataset caters to the evolving assistive requirements within a procedure.
Recently, spatiotemporal graphs have emerged as a concise and elegant manner of representing video clips in an object-centric fashion, and have shown to be useful for downstream tasks such as action recognition. In this work, we investigate the use of latent spatiotemporal graphs to represent a surgical video in terms of the constituent anatomical structures and tools and their evolving properties over time. To build the graphs, we first predict frame-wise graphs using a pre-trained model, then add temporal edges between nodes based on spatial coherence and visual and semantic similarity. Unlike previous approaches, we incorporate long-term temporal edges in our graphs to better model the evolution of the surgical scene and increase robustness to temporary occlusions. We also introduce a novel graph-editing module that incorporates prior knowledge and temporal coherence to correct errors in the graph, enabling improved downstream task performance. Using our graph representations, we evaluate two downstream tasks, critical view of safety prediction and surgical phase recognition, obtaining strong results that demonstrate the quality and flexibility of the learned representations. Code is available at github.com/CAMMA-public/SurgLatentGraph.
Purpose: General consensus amongst researchers and industry points to a lack of large, representative annotated datasets as the biggest obstacle to progress in the field of surgical data science. Self-supervised learning represents a solution to part of this problem, removing the reliance on annotations. However, the robustness of current self-supervised learning methods to domain shifts remains unclear, limiting our understanding of its utility for leveraging diverse sources of surgical data. Methods: In this work, we employ self-supervised learning to flexibly leverage diverse surgical datasets, thereby learning taskagnostic representations that can be used for various surgical downstream tasks. Based on this approach, to elucidate the impact of pre-training on downstream task performance, we explore 22 different pre-training dataset combinations by modulating three variables: source hospital, type of surgical procedure, and pre-training scale (number of videos). We then finetune the resulting model initializations on three diverse downstream tasks: namely, phase recognition and critical view of safety in laparoscopic cholecystectomy and phase recognition in laparoscopic hysterectomy. Results: Controlled experimentation highlights sizable boosts in performance across various tasks, datasets, and labeling budgets. However, this performance is intricately linked to the composition of the pre-training dataset, robustly proven through several study stages. Conclusion: The composition of pre-training datasets can severely affect the effectiveness of SSL methods for various downstream tasks and should critically inform future data collection efforts to scale the application of SSL methodologies. Keywords: Self-Supervised Learning, Transfer Learning, Surgical Computer Vision, Endoscopic Videos, Critical View of Safety, Phase Recognition
Instance segmentation of surgical instruments is a long-standing research problem, crucial for the development of many applications for computer-assisted surgery. This problem is commonly tackled via fully-supervised training of deep learning models, requiring expensive pixel-level annotations to train. In this work, we develop a framework for instance segmentation not relying on spatial annotations for training. Instead, our solution only requires binary tool masks, obtainable using recent unsupervised approaches, and binary tool presence labels, freely obtainable in robot-assisted surgery. Based on the binary mask information, our solution learns to extract individual tool instances from single frames, and to encode each instance into a compact vector representation, capturing its semantic features. Such representations guide the automatic selection of a tiny number of instances (8 only in our experiments), displayed to a human operator for tool-type labelling. The gathered information is finally used to match each training instance with a binary tool presence label, providing an effective supervision signal to train a tool instance classifier. We validate our framework on the EndoVis 2017 and 2018 segmentation datasets. We provide results using binary masks obtained either by manual annotation or as predictions of an unsupervised binary segmentation model. The latter solution yields an instance segmentation approach completely free from spatial annotations, outperforming several state-of-the-art fully-supervised segmentation approaches.
Recent advancements in surgical computer vision applications have been driven by fully-supervised methods, primarily using only visual data. These methods rely on manually annotated surgical videos to predict a fixed set of object categories, limiting their generalizability to unseen surgical procedures and downstream tasks. In this work, we put forward the idea that the surgical video lectures available through open surgical e-learning platforms can provide effective supervisory signals for multi-modal representation learning without relying on manual annotations. We address the surgery-specific linguistic challenges present in surgical video lectures by employing multiple complementary automatic speech recognition systems to generate text transcriptions. We then present a novel method, SurgVLP - Surgical Vision Language Pre-training, for multi-modal representation learning. SurgVLP constructs a new contrastive learning objective to align video clip embeddings with the corresponding multiple text embeddings by bringing them together within a joint latent space. To effectively show the representation capability of the learned joint latent space, we introduce several vision-and-language tasks for surgery, such as text-based video retrieval, temporal activity grounding, and video captioning, as benchmarks for evaluation. We further demonstrate that without using any labeled ground truth, our approach can be employed for traditional vision-only surgical downstream tasks, such as surgical tool, phase, and triplet recognition. The code will be made available at https://github.com/CAMMA-public/SurgVLP