Deformable image registration for temporal subtraction of chest radiographs

Min Li, Edward Castillo, Hong Yan Luo, Xiao Lin Zheng, Richard Castillo, Dmitriy Meshkov, Thomas Guerrero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Purpose: Temporal subtraction images constructed from image registration can facilitate the visualization of pathologic changes. In this study, we propose a deformable image registration (DIR) framework for creating temporal subtraction images of chest radiographs. Methods: We developed a DIR methodology using two different image similarity metrics, varying flow (VF) and compressible flow (CF). The proposed registration method consists of block matching, filtering, and interpolation. Specifically, corresponding point pairs between reference and target images are initially determined by minimizing a nonlinear least squares formulation using grid-searching optimization. A two-step filtering process, including least median of squares filtering and backward matching filtering, is then applied to the estimated point matches in order to remove erroneous matches. Finally, moving least squares is used to generate a full displacement field from the filtered point pairs. Results: We applied the proposed DIR method to 10 pairs of clinical chest radiographs and compared it with the demons and B-spline algorithms using the five-point rating score method. The average quality scores were 2.7 and 3 for the demons and B-spline methods, but 3.5 and 4.1 for the VF and CF methods. In addition, subtraction images improved the visual perception of abnormalities in the lungs by using the proposed method. Conclusion: The VF and CF models achieved a higher accuracy than the demons and the B-splinemethods. Furthermore, the proposed methodology demonstrated the ability to create clinically acceptable temporal subtraction chest radiographs that enhance interval changes and can be used to detect abnormalities such as non-small cell lung cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)513-522
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Computer Assisted Radiology and Surgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Chest radiograph
  • Image registration
  • Intensity variation
  • Temporal subtraction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Health Informatics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design


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