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In Biomedical optics express

Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is an emerging imaging technique for ophthalmic disease diagnosis. Two major problems in OCT image analysis are image enhancement and image segmentation. Deep learning methods have achieved excellent performance in image analysis. However, most of the deep learning-based image analysis models are supervised learning-based approaches and need a high volume of training data (e.g., reference clean images for image enhancement and accurate annotated images for segmentation). Moreover, acquiring reference clean images for OCT image enhancement and accurate annotation of the high volume of OCT images for segmentation is hard. So, it is difficult to extend these deep learning methods to the OCT image analysis. We propose an unsupervised learning-based approach for OCT image enhancement and abnormality segmentation, where the model can be trained without reference images. The image is reconstructed by Restricted Boltzmann Machine (RBM) by defining a target function and minimizing it. For OCT image enhancement, each image is independently learned by the RBM network and is eventually reconstructed. In the reconstruction phase, we use the ReLu function instead of the Sigmoid function. Reconstruction of images given by the RBM network leads to improved image contrast in comparison to other competitive methods in terms of contrast to noise ratio (CNR). For anomaly detection, hyper-reflective foci (HF) as one of the first signs in retinal OCTs of patients with diabetic macular edema (DME) are identified based on image reconstruction by RBM and post-processing by removing the HFs candidates outside the area between the first and the last retinal layers. Our anomaly detection method achieves a high ability to detect abnormalities.

Ezhei Mansooreh, Plonka Gerlind, Rabbani Hossein