WE-AB-BRA-12: Virtual Endoscope Tracking for Endoscopy-CT Image Registration




The use of endoscopy in radiotherapy will remain limited until we can register endoscopic video to CT using standard clinical equipment. In this phantom study we tested a registration method using virtual endoscopy to measure CT-space positions from endoscopic video.


Our phantom is a contorted clay cylinder with 2-mm-diameter markers in the luminal surface. These markers are visible on both CT and endoscopic video. Virtual endoscope images were rendered from a polygonal mesh created by segmenting the phantom's luminal surface on CT. We tested registration accuracy by tracking the endoscope's 6-degree-of-freedom coordinates frame-to-frame in a video recorded as it moved through the phantom, and using these coordinates to measure CT-space positions of markers visible in the final frame. To track the endoscope we used the Nelder-Mead method to search for coordinates that render the virtual frame most similar to the next recorded frame. We measured the endoscope's initial-frame coordinates using a set of visible markers, and for image similarity we used a combination of mutual information and gradient alignment. CT-space marker positions were measured by projecting their final-frame pixel addresses through the virtual endoscope to intersect with the mesh. Registration error was quantified as the distance between this intersection and the marker's manually-selected CT-space position.


Tracking succeeded for 6 of 8 videos, for which the mean registration error was 4.8±3.5mm (24 measurements total). The mean error in the axial direction (3.1±3.3mm) was larger than in the sagittal or coronal directions (2.0±2.3mm, 1.7±1.6mm). In the other 2 videos, the virtual endoscope got stuck in a false minimum.


Our method can successfully track the position and orientation of an endoscope, and it provides accurate spatial mapping from endoscopic video to CT. This method will serve as a foundation for an endoscopy-CT registration framework that is clinically valuable and requires no specialized equipment.