User-guided deformable image registration (DIR) has allowed users to actively participate in the DIR process and is expected to improve DIR accuracy. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the time required for and effect of user-guided DIR on registration accuracy for thoracic images among users. In this study, 4-dimensional computed tomographic images of 10 thoracic cancer patients were used. The dataset for these patients was provided by DIR-Lab (www.dir-lab.com) and included a coordinate list of anatomical landmarks (300 bronchial bifurcations). Four medical physicists from different institutions performed DIR between peak-inhale and peak-exhale images with/without the user-guided DIR tool, Reg Refine, implemented in MIM Maestro (MIM software, Cleveland, OH). DIR accuracy was quantified by using target registration errors (TREs) for 300 anatomical landmarks in each patient. The average TREs with user-guided DIR in the 10 images by the 4 medical physicists were 1.48, 1.80, 3.46, and 3.55 mm, respectively, whereas the TREs without user-guided DIR were 3.28, 3.45, 3.56, and 3.28 mm, respectively. The average times taken by the 4 physicists to use the user-guided DIR were 10.0, 6.7, 7.1, and 8.0 min, respectively. This study demonstrated that user-guided DIR can improve DIR accuracy and requires only a moderate amount of time (<10 min). However, 2 of the 4 users did not show much improvement in DIR accuracy, which indicated the necessity of training prior to use of user-guided DIR.
- 4DCT data
- Deformable image registration