Automated lesion detection and segmentation in digital mammography using a u-net deep learning network

Timothy De Moor, Alejandro Rodriguez-Ruiz, Albert Gubern Mérida, Ritse Mann, Jonas Teuwen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Computer-aided detection or decision support systems aim to improve breast cancer screening programs by helping radiologists to evaluate digital mammography (DM) exams. Commonly such methods proceed in two steps: Selection of candidate regions for malignancy, and later classification as either malignant or not. In this study, we present a candidate detection method based on deep learning to automatically detect and additionally segment soft tissue lesions in DM. A database of DM exams (mostly bilateral and two views) was collected from our institutional archive. In total, 7196 DM exams (28294 DM images) acquired with systems from three different vendors (General Electric, Siemens, Hologic) were collected, of which 2883 contained malignant lesions verified with histopathology. Data was randomly split on an exam level into training (50%), validation (10%) and testing (40%) of deep neural network with u-net architecture. The u-net classifies the image but also provides lesion segmentation. Free receiver operating characteristic (FROC) analysis was used to evaluate the model, on an image and on an exam level. On an image level, a maximum sensitivity of 0.94 at 7.93 false positives (FP) per image was achieved. Similarly, per exam a maximum sensitivity of 0.98 at 7.81 FP per image was achieved. In conclusion, the method could be used as a candidate selection model with high accuracy and with the additional information of lesion segmentation.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication14th International Workshop on Breast Imaging (IWBI 2018)
EditorsE.A. Krupinski
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781510620070
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018
Event14th International Workshop on Breast Imaging (IWBI 2018) - Atlanta, United States
Duration: 8 Jul 201811 Jul 2018

Publication series

NameProgress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging - Proceedings of SPIE
ISSN (Print)1605-7422


Conference14th International Workshop on Breast Imaging (IWBI 2018)
Country/TerritoryUnited States


  • automatic lesion detection
  • automatic lesion segmentation
  • deep learning
  • digital mammography


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