A new framework for incorporating appearance and shape features of lung nodules for precise diagnosis of lung cancer
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This paper proposes a novel framework for the classification of lung nodules using computed tomography (CT) scans. The proposed framework is based on the integrating the following features to get accurate diagnosis of detected lung nodules: (i) Spherical Harmonics-based shape features that have the ability to describe the shape complexity of the lung nodules; (ii) Higher-Order Markov Gibbs Random Field (MGRF)-based appearance model that has the ability to describe the spatial inhomogeneities in the lung nodule; and (iii) volumetric features that describe the size of lung nodules. To accurately model the surface/shape of the detect lung nodules, we used spherical harmonics expansion due to its ability to approximate the surfaces of complicated shapes. We will use the reconstruction error curve as a new metric to describe the shape complexity of the detected lung nodules. Moreover, we developed a new higher 7 th -order MGRF model that has the ability to model the existing the spatial inhomogeneities for both small and large detected lung nodules. Finally, a deep autoencoder (AE) classifier is fed by the above three features to distinguish between the malignant and benign nodules. To evaluate the proposed framework, we used the publicly available data from the Lung Image Database Consortium (LIDC). We used a total of 116 nodules that were collected from 60 patients. By achieving a classification accuracy of 96.00%, the proposed system demonstrates promise to be a valuable tool for the detection of lung cancer.