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MCRformer: Morphological Constraint Reticular Transformer for 3D Medical Image Segmentation
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  • Jun Li ,
  • Nan Chen ,
  • Han Zhou ,
  • Riqing Chen ,
  • Chunhui Feng ,
  • Heng Dong ,
  • Taotao Lai ,
  • Changcai Yang ,
  • Lifang Wei ,
  • Fanggang Cai
Jun Li
Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University, Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University, Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University, Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University, Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Riqing Chen
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Chunhui Feng
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Heng Dong
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Taotao Lai
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Changcai Yang
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Lifang Wei
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Fanggang Cai
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Medical image segmentation is essential in medical image analysis since it can provide reliable assistance in computer-aided clinical diagnosis, treatment planning, and intervention. Although deep learning algorithms based on CNNs and Transformers have made notable progress in medical image segmentation, it is still challenging owing to the objects with complex structures, low discrimination and differences between individuals. To alleviate the problems, we propose a novel 3D medical image segmentation network based on Transformers and CNNs combining morphological information and reticular mechanism. Firstly, the morphological constraint stream is designed to learn the prior shape information based on the CNN model for enhancing the interpretability of the ultimate trained model and accelerating the convergence. Secondly, the Reticular Transformer is utilized to obtain multi-scale information based on the Transformer, which can bind the local texture information and underlying semantic information to further acquire the feature maps with sufficient details and receptive field. The experiments demonstrate that our proposed method outperforms many existing segmentation models in terms of the performance in metrics DSC and HD (80.46\% in DSC on the Synapse dataset and 90.83\% in DSC on the ACDC dataset). The code will be released at https://github.com/rocklijun/MCRformer. Our proposed method can not only achieve superior performance compared with most of the current state-of-the-art methods, but also enhance the robustness and interpretability of the model. Furthermore, the proposed morphological constraint stream has the potential to be transferred to other frameworks for different medical image analysis tasks.
Dec 2023Published in Expert Systems with Applications volume 232 on pages 120877. 10.1016/j.eswa.2023.120877