The use of atlas registration and graph cuts for prostate segmentation in magnetic resonance images

Anne Sofie Korsager*, Valerio Fortunati, Fedde Van Der Lijn, Jesper Carl, Wiro Niessen, Lasse Riis Østergaard, Theo Van Walsum

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: An automatic method for 3D prostate segmentation in magnetic resonance (MR) images is presented for planning image-guided radiotherapy treatment of prostate cancer. Methods: A spatial prior based on intersubject atlas registration is combined with organ-specific intensity information in a graph cut segmentation framework. The segmentation is tested on 67 axial T2-weighted MR images in a leave-one-out cross validation experiment and compared with both manual reference segmentations and with multiatlas-based segmentations using majority voting atlas fusion. The impact of atlas selection is investigated in both the traditional atlas-based segmentation and the new graph cut method that combines atlas and intensity information in order to improve the segmentation accuracy. Best results were achieved using the method that combines intensity information, shape information, and atlas selection in the graph cut framework. Results: A mean Dice similarity coefficient (DSC) of 0.88 and a mean surface distance (MSD) of 1.45 mm with respect to the manual delineation were achieved. Conclusions: This approaches the interobserver DSC of 0.90 and interobserver MSD 0f 1.15 mm and is comparable to other studies performing prostate segmentation in MR.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1614-1624
JournalMedical Physics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • atlas-based segmentation
  • image-guided radiotherapy
  • prostate cancer
  • prostate segmentation


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