|Abstract||Purpose: The acquisition conditions of medical imaging are often precisely defined, leading to a high homogeneity among different data sets. Nonetheless, outliers or artefacts still appear and need to be reliably detected to ensure a reliable diagnosis. Thus, the algorithms need to handle small sample sizes especially, when working with domain specific imaging modalities.
Methods: In this work, we suggest a pipeline for the detection and segmentation of light pollution in near-infrared fluorescence optical imaging (NIR-FOI), based on a small sample size. NIR-FOI produces spatio-temporal data with two spatial and one temporal dimension. To calculate a two-dimensional light pollution map for the entire image stack, we combine region growing and k-nearest neighbours (kNN), which classifies pixels into fore- and background by its entire temporal component. Thus, decision-making on reduced data is omitted.
Results: We achieved a F1 score of 0.99 for classifying a data set as light polluted or pollution-free. Additionally, we reached a total F1 score of 0.90 for detecting regions of interest within the polluted data sets. Finally, an average Dice’s coefficient measuring the segmentation performance over all polluted data sets of 0.80 was accomplished.
Conclusions: A Dice’s coefficient of 0.80 for the area segmentation does not seem perfect. However, there are two main factors, besides true prediction errors, lowering the score: Segmentation mistakes on small areas lead to a rapid decrease in the score and labelling errors due to complex data. However, in combination with the light-polluted data set and pollution area detection, these results can be considered successful and play a key role in our general goal: Exploiting NIR-FOI for the early detection of arthritis within hand joints.|