Comput. Biol. Med. - Fully automated computer-aided volume estimation system for thyroid planar scintigraphy.


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Patient-specific dosimetry calculations are often performed for radioiodine therapy in patients with Graves' hyperthyroidism. The radioiodine doses are typically calculated to deliver the desired amount of radiation based on gland size and radioactive iodine uptake. Thus the estimation of thyroid gland volume is of great importance for radioiodine therapy. In clinical practice, thyroid volume determinations are usually performed with ultrasonography (US) or with planar scintigraphy (PS). In traditional planar scintigraphic studies, the thyroid boundary is estimated using a fixed threshold value if the shape of the thyroid is well-defined or a manually drawn region of interest (ROI) if the thyroid shape is irregular. The thyroid volume is then calculated based on the area thus determined. Delineating the thyroid area on a planar scintigram is not easy when applying a fixed threshold value. Moreover, hand-drawn ROIs are time consuming, tedious, and highly operator-dependent. In this study, for a PS image, a fully automated thyroid volume estimation system mainly consisting of four steps, i.e. preprocessing, image contrast enhancement, image segmentation, and automated ROI finding, was proposed to obtain the maximum height and area of each thyroid lobe, and thus calculate the thyroid volume using either Himanka-Larsson's formula or Allen-Goodwin's formula. A set of 40 Graves's disease patients regarded as training set were used to determine empirically some parameters operated in the system. A set of 30 Graves's disease patients being independent of the training set, regarded as test set for thyroid volume measurements were used for comparisons and performance analyses. In this study, the US was adopted as a standard reference. The statistical analyses were performed with bias, precision, and relative differences. The results of thyroid volume estimation from the proposed approach correlated well with those from US, and the statistical performance analyses showed good agreement between them. In comparison, our automated approach with Allen-Goodwin's formula had not only good correlation with US (R(2)=0.99) but also the best bias (0.8), precision (?2.32 ml), and low relative differences (2.2 ? 6.1%). It is expected that this automated computer-assisted approach can help physicians in the determination of patient-specific administered activities for treatment of thyroid disease.

Resumo Limpo

patientspecif dosimetri calcul often perform radioiodin therapi patient grave hyperthyroid radioiodin dose typic calcul deliv desir amount radiat base gland size radioact iodin uptak thus estim thyroid gland volum great import radioiodin therapi clinic practic thyroid volum determin usual perform ultrasonographi us planar scintigraphi ps tradit planar scintigraph studi thyroid boundari estim use fix threshold valu shape thyroid welldefin manual drawn region interest roi thyroid shape irregular thyroid volum calcul base area thus determin delin thyroid area planar scintigram easi appli fix threshold valu moreov handdrawn roi time consum tedious high operatordepend studi ps imag fulli autom thyroid volum estim system main consist four step ie preprocess imag contrast enhanc imag segment autom roi find propos obtain maximum height area thyroid lobe thus calcul thyroid volum use either himankalarsson formula allengoodwin formula set gravess diseas patient regard train set use determin empir paramet oper system set gravess diseas patient independ train set regard test set thyroid volum measur use comparison perform analys studi us adopt standard refer statist analys perform bias precis relat differ result thyroid volum estim propos approach correl well us statist perform analys show good agreement comparison autom approach allengoodwin formula good correl us r also best bias precis ml low relat differ expect autom computerassist approach can help physician determin patientspecif administ activ treatment thyroid diseas

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