Validation of a surface-based deformable MRI-3D ultrasound image registration algorithm toward clinical implementation for interstitial prostate brachytherapy

Published:January 12, 2023DOI:



      The purpose of this study was to evaluate and clinically implement a deformable surface-based magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to three-dimensional ultrasound (US) image registration algorithm for prostate brachytherapy (BT) with the aim to reduce operator dependence and facilitate dose escalation to an MRI-defined target.


      Our surface-based deformable image registration (DIR) algorithm first translates and scales to align the US- and MR-defined prostate surfaces, followed by deformation of the MR-defined prostate surface to match the US-defined prostate surface. The algorithm performance was assessed in a phantom using three deformation levels, followed by validation in three retrospective high-dose-rate BT clinical cases. For comparison, manual rigid registration and cognitive fusion by physician were also employed. Registration accuracy was assessed using the Dice similarity coefficient (DSC) and target registration error (TRE) for embedded spherical landmarks. The algorithm was then implemented intraoperatively in a prospective clinical case.


      In the phantom, our DIR algorithm demonstrated a mean DSC and TRE of 0.74 ± 0.08 and 0.94 ± 0.49 mm, respectively, significantly improving the performance compared to manual rigid registration with 0.64 ± 0.16 and 1.88 ± 1.24 mm, respectively. Clinical results demonstrated reduced variability compared to the current standard of cognitive fusion by physicians.


      We successfully validated a DIR algorithm allowing for translation of MR-defined target and organ-at-risk contours into the intraoperative environment. Prospective clinical implementation demonstrated the intraoperative feasibility of our algorithm, facilitating targeted biopsies and dose escalation to the MR-defined lesion. This method provides the potential to standardize the registration procedure between physicians, reducing operator dependence.


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