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A Journal on Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging
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The Quarterly Journal of Nuclear Medicine 1998 June;42(2):83-92

Copyright © 2000 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Three dimensional image alignment, registration and fusion

Treves S. T., Mitchell K. D., Habboush I. H.

From the Division of Nuclear Medicine Children’s Hospital Harvard Medical School Boston, Massachusetts, USA


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Combined assess­ment of ­three dimen­sion­al ana­tom­i­cal and func­tion­al imag­es (­SPECT, PET, MRI, CT) is use­ful to deter­mine the ­nature and ­extent of ­lesions in ­many ­parts of the ­body. Physicians prin­ci­pal­ly ­rely on ­their spa­tial ­sense to men­tal­ly re-or­i­ent and over­lap imag­es ­obtained ­with dif­fer­ent imag­ing modal­ities. Objective meth­ods ­that ­enable ­easy and intui­tive ­image reg­is­tra­tion can ­help the phy­si­cian ­arrive at ­more opti­mal diag­nos­es and bet­ter treat­ment deci­sions. This ­review ­describes a sim­ple, intui­tive and ­robust ­image reg­is­tra­tion ­approach devel­oped in our labor­a­to­ry. It dif­fers ­from ­most oth­er reg­is­tra­tion tech­niques in ­that it ­allows the ­user to incor­po­rate all of the avail­able infor­ma­tion with­in the imag­es in the reg­is­tra­tion pro­cess. This meth­od ­takes ­full advan­tage of the abil­ity of knowl­edge­able oper­a­tors to ­achieve ­image reg­is­tra­tion and ­fusion ­using an intui­tive inter­ac­tive vis­u­al ­approach. It can reg­is­ter imag­es accu­rate­ly and quick­ly with­out the use of elab­orate math­e­mat­i­cal mod­el­ing or opti­mi­za­tion tech­niques. The meth­od pro­vides the oper­a­tor ­with ­tools to manip­u­late imag­es in ­three dimen­sions, includ­ing vis­u­al feed­back tech­niques to ­assess the accu­ra­cy of reg­is­tra­tion (­grids, over­lays, ­masks, and ­fusion of imag­es in dif­fer­ent col­ors). Its appli­ca­tion is not lim­it­ed to ­brain imag­ing and can be ­applied to imag­es ­from any ­region in the ­body. The over­all ­effect is a reg­is­tra­tion algo­rithm ­that is ­easy to imple­ment and can ­achieve accu­ra­cy on the ­order of one pix­el.

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