Previously, "Deformable organisms" were introduced as a novel paradigm for medical image analysis that uses artificial life modelling concepts. Deformable organisms were designed to complement the classical bottom-up deformable models methodologies (geometrical and physical layers), with top-down intelligent deformation control mechanisms (behavioral and cognitive layers). However, a true physical layer was absent and in order to complete medical image segmentation tasks, deformable organisms relied on pure geometry-based shape deformations guided by sensory data, prior structural knowledge, and expert-generated schedules of behaviors. In this paper we introduce the use of physics-based shape deformations within the deformable organisms framework yielding additional robustness by allowing intuitive real-time user guidance and interaction when necessary. We present the results of applying our physics-based deformable organisms, with an underlying dynamic spring-mass mesh model, to segmenting and labelling the corpus callosum in 2D midsagittal magnetic resonance images.
Proc. SPIE. 5747, Medical Imaging 2005: Image Processing
KEYWORDS: Image processing algorithms and systems, Edge detection, Detection and tracking algorithms, Visualization, Image segmentation, Medical imaging, Kidney, 3D displays, 3D image processing, Brain
Segmenting anatomical structures from medical images is usually one of the most important initial steps in many applications, including visualization, computer-aided diagnosis, and morphometric analysis. Manual 2D segmentation suffers from operator variability and is tedious and time-consuming. These disadvantages are accentuated in 3D applications and, the additional requirement of producing intuitive displays to integrate 3D information for the user, makes manual segmentation even less approachable in 3D. Robust, automatic medical image segmentation in 2D to 3D remains an open problem caused particularly by sensitivity to low-level parameters of segmentation algorithms. Semi-automatic techniques present possible balanced solution where automation focuses on low-level computing-intensive tasks that can be hidden from the user, while manual inter-
vention captures high-level expert knowledge nontrivial to capture algorithmically. In this paper we present a 3D extension to the 2D semi-automatic live-wire technique. Live-wire based contours generated semi-automatically on a selected set of slices are used as seed points on new unseen slices in different orientations. The seed points are calculated from intersections of user-based live-wire techniques with new slices. Our algorithm includes a step for ordering the live-wire seed points in the new slices, which is essential for subsequent multi-stage optimal path calculation. We present results of automatically detecting contours in new slices in 3D volumes from a variety of medical images.