"A Strain Energy Filter for 3D Vessel Enhancement with Application to Pulmonary CT Images"

Changyan Xiao, Marius Staring, Denis P. Shamonin, Johan H.C. Reiber, Jan Stolk and Berend C. Stoel


The traditional Hessian-related vessel filters often suffer from detecting complex structures like bifurcations due to an over-simplified cylindrical model. To solve this problem, we present a shape-tuned strain energy density function to measure vessel likelihood in 3D medical images. This method is initially inspired by established stress-strain principles in mechanics. By considering the Hessian matrix as a stress tensor, the three invariants from orthogonal tensor decomposition are used independently or combined to formulate distinctive functions for vascular shape discrimination, brightness contrast and structure strengthen measuring. Moreover, a mathematical description of Hessian eigenvalues for general vessel shapes is obtained, based on an intensity continuity assumption, and a relative Hessian strength term is presented to ensure the dominance of second-order derivatives as well as suppress undesired step edges. Finally, we adopt the multi-scale scheme to find an optimal solution through scale space. The proposed method is validated in experiments with a digital phantom and non-contrast-enhanced pulmonary CT data. It is shown that our model performed more effectively in enhancing vessel bifurcations and preserving details, compared to three existing filters.



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Copyright © 2011 by the authors. Published version © 2011 by Elsevier Science. Personal use of this material is permitted. However, permission to reprint or republish this material for advertising or promotional purposes or for creating new collective works for resale or redistribution to servers or lists, or to reuse any copyrighted component of this work in other works, must be obtained from the copyright holder.


Source code

The source code of the methods described in this paper can be found in the toolkit ITKTools, available at https://github.com/ITKTools/ITKTools. The specific tool is pxenhancement.

BibTeX entry

author = "{Changyan Xiao and Marius Staring and Denis P. Shamonin and Johan H.C. Reiber and Jan Stolk and Berend C. Stoel}",
title = "{A Strain Energy Filter for 3D Vessel Enhancement with Application to Pulmonary CT Images}",
journal = "{Medical Image Analysis}",
volume = "{15}",
number = "{1}",
pages = "{112 - 124}",
month = "{February}",
year = "{2011}",

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