SU-F-R-22: Malignancy Classification for Small Pulmonary Nodules with Radiomics and Logistic Regression




We conducted a retrospective study of Radiomics research for classifying malignancy of small pulmonary nodules. A machine learning algorithm of logistic regression and open research platform of Radiomics, IBEX (Imaging Biomarker Explorer), were used to evaluate the classification accuracy.


The training set included 100 CT image series from cancer patients with small pulmonary nodules where the average diameter is 1.10 cm. These patients registered at Chang Gung Memorial Hospital and received a CT-guided operation of lung cancer lobectomy. The specimens were classified by experienced pathologists with a B (benign) or M (malignant). CT images with slice thickness of 0.625 mm were acquired from a GE BrightSpeed 16 scanner. The study was formally approved by our institutional internal review board. Nodules were delineated and 374 feature parameters were extracted from IBEX. We first used the t-test and p-value criteria to study which feature can differentiate between group B and M. Then we implemented a logistic regression algorithm to perform nodule malignancy classification. 10-fold cross-validation and the receiver operating characteristic curve (ROC) were used to evaluate the classification accuracy. Finally hierarchical clustering analysis, Spearman rank correlation coefficient, and clustering heat map were used to further study correlation characteristics among different features.


238 features were found differentiable between group B and M based on whether their statistical p-values were less than 0.05. A forward search algorithm was used to select an optimal combination of features for the best classification and 9 features were identified. Our study found the best accuracy of classifying malignancy was 0.79±0.01 with the 10-fold cross-validation. The area under the ROC curve was 0.81±0.02.


Benign nodules may be treated as a malignant tumor in low-dose CT and patients may undergo unnecessary surgeries or treatments. Our study may help radiologists to differentiate nodule malignancy for low-dose CT.