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Differentiating Bone Lesions and Degenerative Joint Disease in NaF PET/CT Scans Using Machine Learning

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T Perk

T Perk1*, T Bradshaw1 , E Meyer2 , S Muzahir1 , R Jeraj1 , (1) University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin, (2) Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland, Ohio


TU-C-12A-12 Tuesday 10:15AM - 12:15PM Room: 12A

Purpose: [F-18]NaF PET can be used to image bone metastases; however, tracer uptake in degenerative joint disease (DJD) often appears similar to metastases. This study aims to develop and compare different machine learning algorithms to automatically identify regions of [F-18]NaF scans that correspond to DJD.

Methods: 10 metastatic prostate cancer patients received whole body [F-18]NaF PET/CT scans prior to treatment. Image segmentation resulted in 852 ROIs, 69 of which were identified by a nuclear medicine physician as DJD. For all ROIs, various PET and CT textural features were computed. ROIs were divided into training and testing sets used to train eight different machine learning classifiers. Classifiers were evaluated based on receiver operating characteristics area under the curve (AUC), sensitivity, specificity, and positive predictive value (PPV). We also assessed the added value of including CT features in addition to PET features for training classifiers.

Results: The training set consisted of 37 DJD ROIs with 475 non-DJD ROIs, and the testing set consisted of 32 DJD ROIs with 308 non-DJD ROIs. Of all classifiers, generalized linear models (GLM), decision forests (DF), and support vector machines (SVM) had the best performance. AUCs of GLM (0.929), DF (0.921), and SVM (0.889) were significantly higher than the other models (p<0.001). GLM and DF, overall, had the best sensitivity, specificity, and PPV, and gave a significantly better performance (p<0.01) than all other models. PET/CT GLM classifiers had higher AUC than just PET or just CT. GLMs built using PET/CT information had superior or comparable sensitivities, specificities and PPVs to just PET or just CT.

Conclusion: Machine learning algorithms trained with PET/CT features were able to identify some cases of DJD. GLM outperformed the other classification algorithms. Using PET and CT information together was shown to be superior to using PET or CT features alone.

Funding Support, Disclosures, and Conflict of Interest: Research supported by the Prostate Cancer Foundation

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