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Implicit Neural Representations for Modeling of Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Progression

by   Dieuwertje Alblas, et al.
University of Twente

Abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAAs) are progressive dilatations of the abdominal aorta that, if left untreated, can rupture with lethal consequences. Imaging-based patient monitoring is required to select patients eligible for surgical repair. In this work, we present a model based on implicit neural representations (INRs) to model AAA progression. We represent the AAA wall over time as the zero-level set of a signed distance function (SDF), estimated by a multilayer perception that operates on space and time. We optimize this INR using automatically extracted segmentation masks in longitudinal CT data. This network is conditioned on spatiotemporal coordinates and represents the AAA surface at any desired resolution at any moment in time. Using regularization on spatial and temporal gradients of the SDF, we ensure proper interpolation of the AAA shape. We demonstrate the network's ability to produce AAA interpolations with average surface distances ranging between 0.72 and 2.52 mm from images acquired at highly irregular intervals. The results indicate that our model can accurately interpolate AAA shapes over time, with potential clinical value for a more personalised assessment of AAA progression.


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