27 February 2018 Blood vessel segmentation in modern wide-field retinal images in the presence of additive Gaussian noise
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Retinal blood vessels indicate some serious health ramifications, such as cardiovascular disease and stroke. Thanks to modern imaging technology, high-resolution images provide detailed information to help analyze retinal vascular features before symptoms associated with such conditions fully develop. Additionally, these retinal images can be used by ophthalmologists to facilitate diagnosis and the procedures of eye surgery. A fuzzy noise reduction algorithm was employed to enhance color images corrupted by Gaussian noise. The present paper proposes employing a contrast limited adaptive histogram equalization to enhance illumination and increase the contrast of retinal images captured from state-of-the-art cameras. Possessing directional properties, the multistructure elements method can lead to high-performance edge detection. Therefore, multistructure elements-based morphology operators are used to detect high-quality image ridges. Following this detection, the irrelevant ridges, which are not part of the vessel tree, were removed by morphological operators by reconstruction, attempting also to keep the thin vessels preserved. A combined method of connected components analysis (CCA) in conjunction with a thresholding approach was further used to identify the ridges that correspond to vessels. The application of CCA can yield higher efficiency when it is locally applied rather than applied on the whole image. The significance of our work lies in the way in which several methods are effectively combined and the originality of the database employed, making this work unique in the literature. Computer simulation results in wide-field retinal images with up to a 200-deg field of view are a testimony of the efficacy of the proposed approach, with an accuracy of 0.9524.
© 2018 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE)
Morteza M. Asem, Iman S. Oveisi, Mona Janbozorgi, "Blood vessel segmentation in modern wide-field retinal images in the presence of additive Gaussian noise," Journal of Medical Imaging 5(3), 031405 (27 February 2018). https://doi.org/10.1117/1.JMI.5.3.031405 . Submission: Received: 17 November 2017; Accepted: 2 February 2018
Received: 17 November 2017; Accepted: 2 February 2018; Published: 27 February 2018

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