Automated detection of third molars and mandibular nerve by deep learning
SourceScientific Reports, 9, (2019), article 9007
Article / Letter to editor
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Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery
SubjectRadboudumc 0: Other Research RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences; Radboudumc 10: Reconstructive and regenerative medicine RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences
The approximity of the inferior alveolar nerve (IAN) to the roots of lower third molars (M3) is a risk factor for the occurrence of nerve damage and subsequent sensory disturbances of the lower lip and chin following the removal of third molars. To assess this risk, the identification of M3 and IAN on dental panoramic radiographs (OPG) is mandatory. In this study, we developed and validated an automated approach, based on deep-learning, to detect and segment the M3 and IAN on OPGs. As a reference, M3s and IAN were segmented manually on 81 OPGs. A deep-learning approach based on U-net was applied on the reference data to train the convolutional neural network (CNN) in the detection and segmentation of the M3 and IAN. Subsequently, the trained U-net was applied onto the original OPGs to detect and segment both structures. Dice-coefficients were calculated to quantify the degree of similarity between the manually and automatically segmented M3s and IAN. The mean dice-coefficients for M3s and IAN were 0.947 +/- 0.033 and 0.847 +/- 0.099, respectively. Deep-learning is an encouraging approach to segment anatomical structures and later on in clinical decision making, though further enhancement of the algorithm is advised to improve the accuracy.
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