Semi-automatic Segmentation of MRI Brain Metastases Combining Support Vector Machine and Morphological Operators

Gloria Gonella, Elisabetta Binaghi, Paola Nocera, Cinzia Mordacchini

Abstract

The objective of this study is to develop a semi-automatic, interactive segmentation strategy for efficient and accurate brain metastases delineation on Post Gadolinium T1-weighted brain MRI images. Salient aspects of the proposed solutions are the combined use of machine learning and image processing techniques, based on Support Vector Machine and Morphological Operators respectively, to delineate pathological and healthy tissues. The overall segmentation procedure is designed to operate on a clinical setting to reduce the workload of health-care professionals but leaving to them full control of the process. The segmentation process was validated for in-house collected image data obtained from radiation therapy studies. The results prove that the allied use of SVM and Morphological Operators produces accurate segmentations, useful for their insertion in clinical practice.

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