Retinal boundary segmentation in stargardt disease optical coherence tomography images using automated deep learning

Jason Kugelman, David Alonso-Caneiro, Yi Chen, Sukanya Arunachalam, Di Huang, Natasha Vallis, Michael J. Collins, Fred K. Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: To use a deep learning model to develop a fully automated method (fully semantic network and graph search [FS-GS]) of retinal segmentation for optical coherence tomography (OCT) images from patients with Stargardt disease. Methods: Eighty-seven manually segmented (ground truth) OCT volume scan sets (5171 B-scans) from 22 patients with Stargardt disease were used for training, validation and testing of a novel retinal boundary detection approach (FS-GS) that combines a fully semantic deep learning segmentation method, which generates a per-pixel class predic-tion map with a graph-search method to extract retinal boundary positions. The performance was evaluated using the mean absolute boundary error and the differences in two clinical metrics (retinal thickness and volume) compared with the ground truth. The performance of a separate deep learning method and two publicly available software algorithms were also evaluated against the ground truth. Results: FS-GS showed an excellent agreement with the ground truth, with a boundary mean absolute error of 0.23 and 1.12 pixels for the internal limiting membrane and the base of retinal pigment epithelium or Bruch’s membrane, respectively. The mean difference in thickness and volume across the central 6 mm zone were 2.10 μm and 0.059 mm3. The performance of the proposed method was more accurate and consistent than the publicly available OCTExplorer and AURA tools. Conclusions: The FS-GS method delivers good performance in segmentation of OCT images of pathologic retina in Stargardt disease. Translational Relevance: Deep learning models can provide a robust method for retinal segmentation and support a high-throughput analysis pipeline for measuring retinal thickness and volume in Stargardt disease.

Original languageEnglish
Article number12
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalTranslational Vision Science and Technology
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2020


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