Objectives: To determine the accuracy of an artificial neural network (ANN) for fully automated detection of the presence and phase of iodinated contrast agent in routine abdominal multidetector computed tomography (MDCT) scans and evaluate the effect of contrast correction for osteoporosis screening.
Methods: This HIPPA-compliant study retrospectively included 579 MDCT scans in 193 patients (62.4 ± 14.6 years, 48 women). Three different ANN models (2D DenseNet with random slice selection, 2D DenseNet with anatomy-guided slice selection, 3D DenseNet) were trained in 462 MDCT scans of 154 patients (threefold cross-validation), who underwent triphasic CT. All ANN models were tested in 117 unseen triphasic scans of 39 patients, as well as in a public MDCT dataset containing 311 patients. In the triphasic test scans, trabecular volumetric bone mineral density (BMD) was calculated using a fully automated pipeline. Root-mean-square errors (RMSE) of BMD measurements with and without correction for contrast application were calculated in comparison to nonenhanced (NE) scans.
Results: The 2D DenseNet with anatomy-guided slice selection outperformed the competing models and achieved an F1 score of 0.98 and an accuracy of 98.3% in the test set (public dataset: F1 score 0.93; accuracy 94.2%). Application of contrast agent resulted in significant BMD biases (all p < .001; portal-venous (PV): RMSE 18.7 mg/ml, mean difference 17.5 mg/ml; arterial (AR): RMSE 6.92 mg/ml, mean difference 5.68 mg/ml). After the fully automated correction, this bias was no longer significant (p > .05; PV: RMSE 9.45 mg/ml, mean difference 1.28 mg/ml; AR: RMSE 3.98 mg/ml, mean difference 0.94 mg/ml).
Conclusion: Automatic detection of the contrast phase in multicenter CT data was achieved with high accuracy, minimizing the contrast-induced error in BMD measurements.
Key points: • A 2D DenseNet with anatomy-guided slice selection achieved an F1 score of 0.98 and an accuracy of 98.3% in the test set. In a public dataset, an F1 score of 0.93 and an accuracy of 94.2% were obtained. • Automated adjustment for contrast injection improved the accuracy of lumbar bone mineral density measurements (RMSE 18.7 mg/ml vs. 9.45 mg/ml respectively, in the portal-venous phase). • An artificial neural network can reliably reveal the presence and phase of iodinated contrast agent in multidetector CT scans ( https://github.com/ferchonavarro/anatomy_guided_contrast_c ). This allows minimizing the contrast-induced error in opportunistic bone mineral density measurements.
Keywords: Bone density; Machine learning; Multidetector computed tomography; Osteoporosis; Screening.
© 2021. The Author(s).