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In BMC ophthalmology

BACKGROUND : Classification of optical coherence tomography (OCT) images can be achieved with high accuracy using classical convolution neural networks (CNN), a commonly used deep learning network for computer-aided diagnosis. Classical CNN has often been criticized for suppressing positional relations in a pooling layer. Therefore, because capsule networks can learn positional information from images, we attempted application of a capsule network to OCT images to overcome that shortcoming. This study is our attempt to improve classification accuracy by replacing CNN with a capsule network.

METHODS : From an OCT dataset, we produced a training dataset of 83,484 images and a test dataset of 1000 images. For training, the dataset comprises 37,205 images with choroidal neovascularization (CNV), 11,348 with diabetic macular edema (DME), 8616 with drusen, and 26,315 normal images. The test dataset has 250 images from each category. The proposed model was constructed based on a capsule network for improving classification accuracy. It was trained using the training dataset. Subsequently, the test dataset was used to evaluate the trained model.

RESULTS : Classification of OCT images using our method achieved accuracy of 99.6%, which is 3.2 percentage points higher than that of other methods described in the literature.

CONCLUSION : The proposed method achieved classification accuracy results equivalent to those reported for other methods for CNV, DME, drusen, and normal images.

Tsuji Takumasa, Hirose Yuta, Fujimori Kohei, Hirose Takuya, Oyama Asuka, Saikawa Yusuke, Mimura Tatsuya, Shiraishi Kenshiro, Kobayashi Takenori, Mizota Atsushi, Kotoku Jun’ichi


Capsule network, Choroidal neovascularization, Deep learning, Diabetic macular edema, Drusen, Optical coherence tomography