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In Journal of medical physics

Aims : Deep-learning methods are becoming versatile in the field of medical image analysis. The hand-operated examination of smaller nodules from computed tomography scans becomes a challenging and time-consuming task due to the limitation of human vision. A standardized computer-aided diagnosis (CAD) framework is required for rapid and accurate lung cancer diagnosis. The National Lung Screening Trial recommends routine screening with low-dose computed tomography among high-risk patients to reduce the risk of dying from lung cancer by early cancer detection. The evolvement of clinically acceptable CAD system for lung cancer diagnosis demands perfect prototypes for segmenting lung region, followed by identifying nodules with reduced false positives. Recently, deep-learning methods are increasingly adopted in medical image diagnosis applications.

Subjects and Methods : In this study, a deep-learning-based CAD framework for lung cancer diagnosis with chest computed tomography (CT) images is built using dilated SegNet and convolutional neural networks (CNNs). A dilated SegNet model is employed to segment lung from chest CT images, and a CNN model with batch normalization is developed to identify the true nodules from all possible nodules. The dilated SegNet and CNN models have been trained on the sample cases taken from the LUNA16 dataset. The performance of the segmentation model is measured in terms of Dice coefficient, and the nodule classifier is evaluated with sensitivity. The discriminant ability of the features learned by a CNN classifier is further confirmed with principal component analysis.

Results : Experimental results confirm that the dilated SegNet model segments the lung with an average Dice coefficient of 0.89 ± 0.23 and the customized CNN model yields a sensitivity of 94.8 on categorizing cancerous and noncancerous nodules.

Conclusions : Thus, the proposed CNN models achieve efficient lung segmentation and two-dimensional nodule patch classification in CAD system for lung cancer diagnosis with CT screening.

Agnes S Akila, Anitha J

Computer-aided diagnosis system for lung cancer, convolutional neural network, deep learning, false-positive reduction, lung segmentation, pulmonary nodule detection