Evaluation of a deep learning system for automatic detection of proximal surface dental caries on bitewing radiographs

Mohamed Estai, Marc Tennant, Dieter Gebauer, Andrew Brostek, Janardhan Vignarajan, Maryam Mehdizadeh, Sajib Saha

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to evaluate a deep learning (DL) system using convolutional neural networks (CNNs) for automatic detection of caries on bitewing radiographs.

STUDY DESIGN: In total, 2468 bitewings were labeled by 3 dentists to create the reference standard. Of these images, 1257 had caries and 1211 were sound. The Faster region-based CNN was applied to detect the regions of interest (ROIs) with potential lesions. A total of 13,246 ROIs were generated from all 'sound' images, and 50% of 'caries' images (selected randomly) were used to train the ROI detection module. The remaining 50% of 'caries' images were used to validate the ROI detection module. Caries detection was then performed using Inception-ResNet-v2. A set of 3297 'caries' and 5321 'sound' ROIs cropped from the 2468 images was used to train and validate the caries detection module. Data sets were randomly divided into training (90%) and validation (10%) data sets. Recall, precision, specificity, accuracy, and F1 score were used as metrics to assess performance.

RESULTS: The caries detection module achieved recall, precision, specificity, accuracy, and F1 scores of 0.89, 0.86, 0.86, 0.87, and 0.87, respectively.

CONCLUSIONS: The proposed DL system demonstrated promising performance for detecting proximal surface caries on bitewings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)262-270
Number of pages9
JournalOral Surgery, Oral Medicine, Oral Pathology and Oral Radiology
Issue number2
Early online date18 Mar 2022
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2022


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