Ensemble of convolutional neural networks for classification of breast microcalcification from mammograms

Annu Int Conf IEEE Eng Med Biol Soc. 2017 Jul;2017:689-692. doi: 10.1109/EMBC.2017.8036918.


Human level recall performance in detecting breast cancer considering microcalcifications from mammograms has a recall value between 74.5% and 92.3%. In this research, we approach to breast microcalcification classification problem using convolutional neural networks along with various preprocessing methods such as contrast scaling, dilation, cropping etc. and decision fusion using ensemble of networks. Various experiments on Digital Database for Screening Mammography dataset showed that preprocessing poses great importance on the classification performance. The stand-alone models using the dilation and cropping preprocessing techniques achieved the highest recall value of 91.3%. The ensembles of the stand-alone models surpass this recall value and a 97.3% value of recall is achieved. The ensemble having the highest F1 Score (harmonic mean of precision and recall), which is 94.5%, has a recall value of 94.0% and a precision value of 95.0%. This recall is still above human level performance and the models achieve competitive results in terms of accuracy, precision, recall and F1 score measures.

MeSH terms

  • Breast Diseases*
  • Calcinosis
  • Humans
  • Mammography
  • Neural Networks, Computer*