Using AI & MRIs to diagnose Brain Tumours
The period from referral to test result can take up to 10% of the average survival time. 4,753 people were waiting longer than 6 weeks for MRI scan results1 and Glioblastoma, the most common high-grade brain tumor has an average survival time 12-18 months 2
A Radiologist’s view of Brain Tumors
Brain Tumors are uncontrolled, unnatural growth, and division of brain tissue. They are thankfully not very common but they are one of the most lethal cancers. A Radiologist’s job is to diagnose and analyse these tumors to provide the best treatment plan. Currently, the time from scan results to report can take more than four solid hours 3 and, due to the requirement of highly specialized trained individuals, these are done back-to-back reducing accuracy.
The use of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scans
The most common diagnostic tool for brain tumors is the MRI due to its non-invasive nature and ability to image diverse tissue types and physiological processes. There is a need for accurate and fully automated methods. Manual segmentation around tumor margins on a slice-by-slice basis can take 12 minutes or more per tumor per sequence, with semi-automatic methods taking 3-5 mins 4. Automated segmentation that is not vulnerable to operator subjectivity may be beneficial 5.
NHS Diagnostic Waiting Times and Activity Data ↩
The Brain Tumour Charity Guide to Glioblastoma ↩
DeepMind Press Release ↩
Odland A, Server A, Saxhaug C, Breivik B, Groote R, Vardal J, Larsson C, Bjørnerud A. Volumetric glioma quantification: comparison of manual and semi-automatic tumor segmentation for the quantification of tumor growth. Acta Radiol. 2015;56:1396–1403. doi: 10.1177/0284185114554822. ↩
Aslian H, Sadeghi M, Mahdavi SR, Babapour Mofrad F, Astarakee M, Khaledi N, Fadavi P. Magnetic resonance imaging-based target volume delineation in radiation therapy treatment planning for brain tumors using localized region-based active contour. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2013;87:195–201. doi: 10.1016/j.ijrobp.2013.04.049. ↩