SU-E-J-208: Fast and Accurate Auto-Segmentation of Abdominal Organs at Risk for Online Adaptive Radiotherapy




Various studies have demonstrated that online adaptive radiotherapy by real-time re-optimization of the treatment plan can improve organs-at-risk (OARs) sparing in the abdominal region. Its clinical implementation, however, requires fast and accurate auto-segmentation of OARs in CT scans acquired just before each treatment fraction. Autosegmentation is particularly challenging in the abdominal region due to the frequently observed large deformations. We present a clinical validation of a new auto-segmentation method that uses fully automated non-rigid registration for propagating abdominal OAR contours from planning to daily treatment CT scans.


OARs were manually contoured by an expert panel to obtain ground truth contours for repeat CT scans (3 per patient) of 10 patients. For the non-rigid alignment, we used a new non-rigid registration method that estimates the deformation field by optimizing local normalized correlation coefficient with smoothness regularization. This field was used to propagate planning contours to repeat CTs. To quantify the performance of the auto-segmentation, we compared the propagated and ground truth contours using two widely used metrics- Dice coefficient (Dc) and Hausdorff distance (Hd). The proposed method was benchmarked against translation and rigid alignment based auto-segmentation.


For all organs, the auto-segmentation performed better than the baseline (translation) with an average processing time of 15 s per fraction CT. The overall improvements ranged from 2% (heart) to 32% (pancreas) in Dc, and 27% (heart) to 62% (spinal cord) in Hd. For liver, kidneys, gall bladder, stomach, spinal cord and heart, Dc above 0.85 was achieved. Duodenum and pancreas were the most challenging organs with both showing relatively larger spreads and medians of 0.79 and 2.1 mm for Dc and Hd, respectively.


Based on the achieved accuracy and computational time we conclude that the investigated auto-segmentation method overcomes an important hurdle to the clinical implementation of online adaptive radiotherapy.

Partial funding for this work was provided by Accuray Incorporated as part of a research collaboration with Erasmus MC Cancer Institute.