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Computational and Mathematical Methods in Medicine
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 472890, 14 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2014/472890
Research Article

Automatic Segmentation of Anatomical Structures from CT Scans of Thorax for RTP

1Electrical and Electronics Engineering Department, Faculty of Engineering, Ankara University, Gölbaşı, 06830 Ankara, Turkey
2Radiation Oncology Department, Gülhane Military Medical Academy, Etlik, 06018 Ankara, Turkey

Received 30 July 2014; Revised 26 November 2014; Accepted 1 December 2014; Published 18 December 2014

Academic Editor: Chuangyin Dang

Copyright © 2014 Emin Emrah Özsavaş et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Modern radiotherapy techniques are vulnerable to delineation inaccuracies owing to the steep dose gradient around the target. In this aspect, accurate contouring comprises an indispensable part of optimal radiation treatment planning (RTP). We suggest a fully automated method to segment the lungs, trachea/main bronchi, and spinal canal accurately from computed tomography (CT) scans of patients with lung cancer to use for RTP. For this purpose, we developed a new algorithm for inclusion of excluded pathological areas into the segmented lungs and a modified version of the fuzzy segmentation by morphological reconstruction for spinal canal segmentation and implemented some image processing algorithms along with them. To assess the accuracy, we performed two comparisons between the automatically obtained results and the results obtained manually by an expert. The average volume overlap ratio values range between 94.30 ± 3.93% and 99.11 ± 0.26% on the two different datasets. We obtained the average symmetric surface distance values between the ranges of 0.28 ± 0.21 mm and 0.89 ± 0.32 mm by using the same datasets. Our method provides favorable results in the segmentation of CT scans of patients with lung cancer and can avoid heavy computational load and might offer expedited segmentation that can be used in RTP.