Gradient-Oriented Boundary Profiles for Shape Analysis using Medial Features

Robert Joseph Tamburo
Master's Thesis, Department of Bioengineering, University of Pittsburgh, November, 2002

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Gradient-oriented boundary profiles have been developed as a novel method to parameterize boundaries. Boundary profiles are created at locations of high gradient magnitude by averaging intensity within a neighborhood of voxels oriented along the image gradient, making them rotationally invariant and relatively insensitive to image noise. A cumulative Gaussian is fit to the collection of averaged voxel intensities yielding estimates of (1) extrapolated intensity values for voxels located far inside and outside of a boundary and (2) anatomical boundary location. Intrinsic measures of confidence have been developed to eliminate low-confidence parameter estimates. Thresholds placed on these measures of confidence allow for high-confidence unsupervised classification of boundaries.

The validity of gradient-oriented profiles is demonstrated on artificially generated three-dimensional test data and shown to accurately parameterize and classify the boundary. Applying the measures of confidence and establishing thresholds, the accuracy of boundary location and intensities estimates improved drastically, making them a high-quality replacement for simpler methods of boundary detection. Towards shape analysis, gradient-oriented boundary profiles are applied to an existing a medial-based approach to shape analysis, known as core atoms. Core atoms in their previous implementation were based on simple gradient direction and unable to form without a priori knowledge of object intensity relative to background. Boundary profiles were applied to core atoms permitting the formation of so called ?ore profiles? Core profiles remove any restriction on the object? or the background? intensity, allowing multiple objects of differing intensities to be located with a single application.

Core profiles were applied to 3D computer-generated data, as well as RT3D ultrasound cardiac phantom data. It was shown on computer-generated data that calculating the volume with core profiles is more accurate then calculating the volume with core atoms, because of the improved accuracy of the boundary location. Two new methods of automatically measuring volume on non-parametric data with core profiles are proposed. Future work with includes constructing medial node models improved by gradient-oriented boundary profiles for automated left ventricular identification and measurement.

Number of pages: 79

Text Reference
Robert Joseph Tamburo, "Gradient-Oriented Boundary Profiles for Shape Analysis using Medial Features," Master's Thesis, Department of Bioengineering, University of Pittsburgh, November, 2002

BibTeX Reference
   author = "Robert Joseph Tamburo",
   title = "Gradient-Oriented Boundary Profiles for Shape Analysis using Medial Features",
   booktitle = "Master's Thesis, Department of Bioengineering, University of Pittsburgh",
   month = "November",
   year = "2002",