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Prognostic Value of a Combined Nomogram Model Integrating 3-Dimensional Deep Learning and Radiomics for Head and Neck Cancer.

OBJECTIVE: The preoperative prediction of the overall survival (OS) status of patients with head and neck cancer (HNC) is significant value for their individualized treatment and prognosis. This study aims to evaluate the impact of adding 3D deep learning features to radiomics models for predicting 5-year OS status.

METHODS: Two hundred twenty cases from The Cancer Imaging Archive public dataset were included in this study; 2212 radiomics features and 304 deep features were extracted from each case. The features were selected by univariate analysis and the least absolute shrinkage and selection operator, and then grouped into a radiomics model containing Positron Emission Tomography /Computed Tomography (PET/CT) radiomics features score, a deep model containing deep features score, and a combined model containing PET/CT radiomics features score +3D deep features score. TumorStage model was also constructed using initial patient tumor node metastasis stage to compare the performance of the combined model. A nomogram was constructed to analyze the influence of deep features on the performance of the model. The 10-fold cross-validation of the average area under the receiver operating characteristic curve and calibration curve were used to evaluate performance, and Shapley Additive exPlanations (SHAP) was developed for interpretation.

RESULTS: The TumorStage model, radiomics model, deep model, and the combined model achieved areas under the receiver operating characteristic curve of 0.604, 0.851, 0.840, and 0.895 on the train set and 0.571, 0.849, 0.832, and 0.900 on the test set. The combined model showed better performance of predicting the 5-year OS status of HNC patients than the radiomics model and deep model. The combined model was shown to provide a favorable fit in calibration curves and be clinically useful in decision curve analysis. SHAP summary plot and SHAP The SHAP summary plot and SHAP force plot visually interpreted the influence of deep features and radiomics features on the model results.

CONCLUSIONS: In predicting 5-year OS status in patients with HNC, 3D deep features could provide richer features for combined model, which showed outperformance compared with the radiomics model and deep model.

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