Quantitative error prediction of medical image registration using regression forests

Hessam Sokooti*, Gorkem Saygili, Ben Glocker, Boudewijn Lelieveldt, Marius Staring

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


Predicting registration error can be useful for evaluation of registration procedures, which is important for the adoption of registration techniques in the clinic. In addition, quantitative error prediction can be helpful in improving the registration quality. The task of predicting registration error is demanding due to the lack of a ground truth in medical images. This paper proposes a new automatic method to predict the registration error in a quantitative manner, and is applied to chest CT scans. A random regression forest is utilized to predict the registration error locally. The forest is built with features related to the transformation model and features related to the dissimilarity after registration. The forest is trained and tested using manually annotated corresponding points between pairs of chest CT scans in two experiments: SPREAD (trained and tested on SPREAD) and inter-database (including three databases SPREAD, DIR-Lab-4DCT and DIR-Lab-COPDgene). The results show that the mean absolute errors of regression are 1.07 ± 1.86 and 1.76 ± 2.59 mm for the SPREAD and inter-database experiment, respectively. The overall accuracy of classification in three classes (correct, poor and wrong registration) is 90.7% and 75.4%, for SPREAD and inter-database respectively. The good performance of the proposed method enables important applications such as automatic quality control in large-scale image analysis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)110-121
Number of pages12
JournalMedical Image Analysis
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • Image registration
  • Registration accuracy
  • Regression forests
  • Uncertainty estimation


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