Deformable registration of CT and cone-beam CT with local intensity matching

Phys Med Biol. 2017 Feb 7;62(3):927-947. doi: 10.1088/1361-6560/aa4f6d. Epub 2017 Jan 11.


Cone-beam CT (CBCT) is a widely used intra-operative imaging modality in image-guided radiotherapy and surgery. A short scan followed by a filtered-backprojection is typically used for CBCT reconstruction. While data on the mid-plane (plane of source-detector rotation) is complete, off-mid-planes undergo different information deficiency and the computed reconstructions are approximate. This causes different reconstruction artifacts at off-mid-planes depending on slice locations, and therefore impedes accurate registration between CT and CBCT. In this paper, we propose a method to accurately register CT and CBCT by iteratively matching local CT and CBCT intensities. We correct CBCT intensities by matching local intensity histograms slice by slice in conjunction with intensity-based deformable registration. The correction-registration steps are repeated in an alternating way until the result image converges. We integrate the intensity matching into three different deformable registration methods, B-spline, demons, and optical flow that are widely used for CT-CBCT registration. All three registration methods were implemented on a graphics processing unit for efficient parallel computation. We tested the proposed methods on twenty five head and neck cancer cases and compared the performance with state-of-the-art registration methods. Normalized cross correlation (NCC), structural similarity index (SSIM), and target registration error (TRE) were computed to evaluate the registration performance. Our method produced overall NCC of 0.96, SSIM of 0.94, and TRE of 2.26 → 2.27 mm, outperforming existing methods by 9%, 12%, and 27%, respectively. Experimental results also show that our method performs consistently and is more accurate than existing algorithms, and also computationally efficient.

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms
  • Artifacts
  • Cone-Beam Computed Tomography / methods*
  • Head and Neck Neoplasms / radiotherapy*
  • Humans
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted / methods*
  • Radiotherapy, Image-Guided / methods*