For obtaining quantitative and objective functional parameters from three-dimensional (3D) echocardiographic sequences, automated segmentation methods may be preferable to cumbersome manual delineation of 3D borders. In this study, a novel optical-flow based tracking method is proposed for propagating 3D endocardial contours of the left ventricle throughout the cardiac cycle. To take full advantage of the time-continuous nature of cardiac motion, a statistical motion model was explicitly embedded in the optical flow solution. The cardiac motion was modeled as frame-to-frame affine transforms, which were extracted using Procrustes analysis on a set of training contours. Principal component analysis was applied to obtain a compact model of cardiac motion throughout the whole cardiac cycle. The parameters of this model were resolved in an optical flow manner, via spatial and temporal gradients in image intensity. The algorithm was tested on 36 noncontrast and 28 contrast enhanced 3D echocardiographic sequences in a leave-one-out manner. Good results were obtained using a combination of the proposed motion-guided method and a purely data-driven optical flow approach. The improvement was particularly noticeable in areas where the LV wall was obscured by image artifacts. In conclusion, the results show the applicability of the proposed method in clinical quality echocardiograms.

Optical flow, Principal component analysis, Segmentation, Three-dimensional echocardiography,
Medical Imaging 2009 - Image Processing
Department of Cardio-Thoracic Surgery

Leung, K.Y.E, Danilouchkine, M.G, van Stralen, M, de Jong, N, van der Steen, A.F.W, & Bosch, J.G. (2009). Tracking left ventricular borders in 3D echocardiographic sequences using motion-guided optical flow. Presented at the Medical Imaging 2009 - Image Processing. doi:10.1117/12.810990