A Nature-Inspired Search Space Reduction Technique for Spine Identification on Ultrasound Samples of Spina Bifida Cases

Cengizler Ç. , Ün M. K. , Büyükkurt S.

Scientific Reports, pp.1, 2020 (Journal Indexed in SCI Expanded)

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.1038/s41598-020-66468-x
  • Title of Journal : Scientific Reports
  • Page Numbers: pp.1


Spina bifda is a birth defect caused by incomplete closing around the spinal cord. Spina bifda is diagnosed in a number of diferent ways. One approach involves searching for a deformity in the spinal axis via ultrasound. Although easy to apply, this approach requires a highly trained clinician to locate the abnormality due to the noise and distortion present in prenatal ultrasound images. Accordingly, visual examination of ultrasound images may be error prone and subjective. A computerized support system that would automatically detect the location of the spinal deformity may be helpful to the clinician in the diagnostic process. Such a software system frst and foremost would require an algorithm for the identifcation of the entire (healthy or unhealthy) spine in the ultrasound image. This paper introduces a novel focking dynamics based approach for reducing the size of the search space in the spine identifcation problem. Proposed approach accepts bone-like blobs on the ultrasound images as bird focks and combine them into bone groups by calculating the migration path of each fock. Presented results reveal that the method is able to locate correct bones to be grouped together and reduce search space (i.e. number of bones) up to 68%