Automated colorectal tumour segmentation in DCE-MRI using supervoxel neighbourhood contrast characteristics.
Irving B., Cifor A., Papiez BW., Franklin J., Anderson EM., Brady SM., Schnabel JA.
Dynamic contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (DCE-MRI) is a powerful protocol for assessing tumour progression from changes in tissue contrast enhancement. Manual colorectal tumour delineation is a challenging and time consuming task due to the complex enhancement patterns in the 4D sequence. There is a need for a consistent approach to colorectal tumour segmentation in DCE-MRI and we propose a novel method based on detection of the tumour from signal enhancement characteristics of homogeneous tumour subregions and their neighbourhoods. Our method successfully detected 20 of 23 cases with a mean Dice score of 0.68 +/- 0.15 compared to expert annotations, which is not significantly different from expert inter-rater variability of 0.73 +/- 0.13 and 0.77 +/- 0.10. In comparison, a standard DCE-MRI tumour segmentation technique, fuzzy c-means, obtained a Dice score of 0.28 +/- 0.17.