Simultaneous lesion and neuroanatomy segmentation in Multiple Sclerosis using deep neural networks

by   Richard McKinley, et al.

Segmentation of both white matter lesions and deep grey matter structures is an important task in the quantification of magnetic resonance imaging in multiple sclerosis. Typically these tasks are performed separately: in this paper we present a single CNN-based segmentation solution for providing fast, reliable segmentations of multimodal MR imagies into lesion classes and healthy-appearing grey- and white-matter structures. We show substantial, statistically significant improvements in both Dice coefficient and in lesion-wise specificity and sensitivity, compared to previous approaches, and agreement with individual human raters in the range of human inter-rater variability. The method is trained on data gathered from a single centre: nonetheless, it performs well on data from centres, scanners and field-strengths not represented in the training dataset. A retrospective study found that the classifier successfully identified lesions missed by the human raters. Lesion labels were provided by human raters, while weak labels for other brain structures (including CSF, cortical grey matter, cortical white matter, cerebellum, amygdala, hippocampus, subcortical GM structures and choroid plexus) were provided by Freesurfer 5.3. The segmentations of these structures compared well, not only with Freesurfer 5.3, but also with FSL-First and Freesurfer 6.1.


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