separation and segmentation of the hepatic vasculature in CT images
Accurate analysis of the hepatic vasculature is of great importance for many medical applications, such as liver surgical planning and diagnosis of tumors and/or vascular diseases. Vessel segmentation is a pivotal step for the morphological and topological analysis of the vascular systems. Physical imaging limitations together with the inherent geometrical complexity of the vessels make the problem challenging. In this work, we present an automatic method to separate and render the portal and hepatic veins in multi-phase CT images. This methods involve image enhancement using an Hessian filter, automatic selection of thresholds to separate vasculature and liver parenchyma, and an iterative classification step for vessel separation. We also propose a series of methods and techniques that segment the portal vein and the hepatic vein, and extract the centerlines of both vessel trees. The approaches have been tested with success on clinical multiphase CT data sets acquired as part of the standard delivery of care.