The morphology of the coronary arteries in single-view angiograms is studied on the basis of densitometric and geometric continuity properties along the vessel segment. The vessel contour is automatically identified by use of a sequential tracking algorithm. The tracking algorithm is based on the assumption of geometric continuation and similarity between the current and the next incremental section along the vessel. A mathematical description of the vessel contour that comprises the lumen width, direction, and intensity as functions of distance along the vessel centerline is generated. The accuracy of the contour representation is quantitatively verified with a synthetic vessel image. The algorithm is applied to the analysis of human coronary cineangiograms and digital subtraction angiograms. Fourier analysis is performed to determine the spatial frequency characteristics of the vessel contour functions. It is shown that, for a vessel of average 9 pixels in lumen width, 90% signal energy of the contour functions is within the spatial frequency range of 0 - 0.09 pixel-1. The result of this study should be useful in analyzing coronary arterial abnormalities and tortuosity. The methodology should also be applicable to vessel contour representation and vessel image compression.
"Densitometric And Geometric Continuity Properties Of Coronary Arteries In Angiograms", Proc. SPIE 1092, Medical Imaging III: Image Processing, (25 May 1989); doi: 10.1117/12.953249; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.953249