A statistical shape model for radiation-free assessment and classification of craniosynostosis

Matthias Schaufelberger, Reinald Peter Kühle, Andreas Wachter, Frederic Weichel, Niclas Hagen, Friedemann Ringwald, Urs Eisenmann, Jürgen Hoffmann, Michael Engel, Christian Freudlsperger, Werner Nahm

The assessment of craniofacial deformities requires patient data which is sparsely available. Statistical shape models provide realistic and synthetic data enabling comparisons of existing methods on a common dataset. We build the first publicly available statistical 3D head model of craniosynostosis patients and the first model focusing on infants younger than 1.5 years. For correspondence establishment, we test and evaluate four template morphing approaches. We further present an original, shape-model-based classification approach for craniosynostosis on photogrammetric surface scans. To the best of our knowledge, our study uses the largest dataset of craniosynostosis patients in a classification study for craniosynostosis and statistical shape modeling to date. We demonstrate that our shape model performs similar to other statistical shape models of the human head. Craniosynostosis-specific pathologies are represented in the first eigenmodes of the model. Regarding the automatic classification of craniosynostis, our classification approach yields an accuracy of 97.3%, comparable to other state-of-the-art methods using both computed tomography scans and stereophotogrammetry. Our publicly available, craniosynostosis-specific statistical shape model enables the assessment of craniosynostosis on realistic and synthetic data. We further present a state-of-the-art shape-model-based classification approach for a radiation-free diagnosis of craniosynostosis.

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