Computer Aided Detection of Spinal Degenerative Osteophytes on Sodium Fluoride PET/CT

  • Jianhua YaoEmail author
  • Hector Munoz
  • Joseph E. Burns
  • Le Lu
  • Ronald M. Summers
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computational Vision and Biomechanics book series (LNCVB, volume 17)


Osteophytes, a common degenerative change in the spine, are found in 90 % of the population over 60 years of age. We have developed an automated system to detect and assess spinal osteophytes on \(^{18}\)F-sodium fluoride (\(^{18}\)F-NaF) PET/CT studies. We first segment the cortical shell of the vertebral body and unwrap it to a 2D map. Multiple characteristic features derived from PET/CT images are then projected onto the map. Finally, we adopt a three-tier learning based scheme to compute a confidence map and detect osteophyte sites and clusters. The system was tested on 20 studies (10 training and 10 testing) and achieved 84 % sensitivity at 3.8 false positives per case for the training set, and 82 % sensitivity at a 4.7 false positive rate for the testing set.


Vertebral Body Nucleus Pulposus Degenerative Disc Disease Cortical Shell Circumferential Location 
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This work was supported by the Intramural Research Program at National Institutes of Health, Clinical Center.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jianhua Yao
    • 1
    Email author
  • Hector Munoz
    • 1
  • Joseph E. Burns
    • 2
  • Le Lu
    • 1
  • Ronald M. Summers
    • 1
  1. 1.Radiology and Imaging Sciences DepartmentClinical Center National Institutes of HealthBethesdaUSA
  2. 2.Department of Radiological SciencesUniversity of California, Irvine School of MedicineOrangeUSA

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