PURPOSE: The deformable registration of pulmonary computed tomography images before and after radiation therapy is challenging due to anatomic changes from radiation fibrosis. We hypothesize that a line-enhanced registration algorithm can reduce landmark error over the entire lung, including the irradiated regions, when compared to an intensity-based deformable registration algorithm.MATERIALS: Two intensity-based B-spline deformable registration algorithms of pre-radiation therapy and post-radiation therapy images were compared. The first was a control intensity-based algorithm that utilized computed tomography images without modification. The second was a line enhancement algorithm that incorporated a Hessian-based line enhancement filter prior to deformable image registration. Registrations were evaluated based on the landmark error between user-identified landmark pairs and the overlap ratio.RESULTS: Twenty-one patients with pre-radiation therapy and post-radiation therapy scans were included. The median time interval between scans was 1.2 years (range: 0.3-3.3 years). Median landmark errors for the line enhancement algorithm were significantly lower than those for the control algorithm over the entire lung (1.67 vs 1.83 mm; P < .01), as well as within the 0 to 5 Gy (1.40 vs 1.57; P < .01) and >5 Gy (2.25 vs 3.31; P < .01) dose intervals. The median lung mask overlap ratio for the line enhancement algorithm (96.2%) was greater than that for the control algorithm (95.8%; P < .01). Landmark error within the >5 Gy dose interval demonstrated a significant inverse relationship with post-radiation therapy fibrosis enhancement after line enhancement filtration (Pearson correlation coefficient = -0.48; P = .03).CONCLUSION: The line enhancement registration algorithm is a promising method for registering images before and after radiation therapy.
View details for PubMedID 29343206