Measurement of retinal vessel widths from fundus images based on 2-D modeling

James Lowell, Andrew Hunter, David Steel, Ansu Basu, Robert Ryder, R Lee Kennedy
IEEE Transactions on Medical Imaging 2004, 23 (10): 1196-204
Changes in retinal vessel diameter are an important sign of diseases such as hypertension, arteriosclerosis and diabetes mellitus. Obtaining precise measurements of vascular widths is a critical and demanding process in automated retinal image analysis as the typical vessel is only a few pixels wide. This paper presents an algorithm to measure the vessel diameter to subpixel accuracy. The diameter measurement is based on a two-dimensional difference of Gaussian model, which is optimized to fit a two-dimensional intensity vessel segment. The performance of the method is evaluated against Brinchmann-Hansen's half height, Gregson's rectangular profile and Zhou's Gaussian model. Results from 100 sample profiles show that the presented algorithm is over 30% more precise than the compared techniques and is accurate to a third of a pixel.

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