Reliability of Single-Slice-Based 2D CT Texture Analysis of Renal Masses: Influence of Intra- and Interobserver Manual Segmentation Variability on Radiomic Feature Reproducibility.
AJR Am J Roentgenol. 2019 Aug;213(2):377-383. doi: 10.2214/AJR.19.21212. Epub 2019 May 7.
Kocak B, Durmaz ES, Kaya OK, Ates E, Kilickesmez O.
OBJECTIVE. The objective of our study was to investigate the potential influence of intra- and interobserver manual segmentation variability on the reliability of single-slice-based 2D CT texture analysis of renal masses.
MATERIALS AND METHODS. For this retrospective study, 30 patients with clear cell renal cell carcinoma were included from a public database. For intra- and interobserver analyses, three radiologists with varying degrees of experience segmented the tumors from unenhanced CT and corticomedullary phase contrast-enhanced CT (CECT) in different sessions. Each radiologist was blind to the image slices selected by other radiologists and him- or herself in the previous session. A total of 744 texture features were extracted from original, filtered, and transformed images. The intraclass correlation coefficient was used for reliability analysis.
RESULTS. In the intraobserver analysis, the rates of features with good to excellent reliability were 84.4-92.2% for unenhanced CT and 85.5-93.1% for CECT. Considering the mean rates of unenhanced CT and CECT, having high experience resulted in better reliability rates in terms of the intraobserver analysis. In the interobserver analysis, the rates were 76.7% for unenhanced CT and 84.9% for CECT. The gray-level cooccurrence matrix and first-order feature groups yielded higher good to excellent reliability rates on both unenhanced CT and CECT. Filtered and transformed images resulted in more features with good to excellent reliability than the original images did on both unenhanced CT and CECT.
CONCLUSION. Single-slice-based 2D CT texture analysis of renal masses is sensitive to intra- and interobserver manual segmentation variability. Therefore, it may lead to nonreproducible results in radiomic analysis unless a reliability analysis is considered in the workflow.
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