Automatic cardiac landmark localization by a recurrent neural network

Mike van Zon, Mitko Veta, Shuo Li

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
2 Downloads (Pure)


Localization of cardiac anatomical landmarks is an important step towards a more robust and accurate analysis of the heart. A fully automatic hybrid framework is proposed that detects key landmark locations in cardiac magnetic resonance (MR) images. Our method is trained and evaluated for the detection of mitral valve points on long-axis MRI and RV insert points in short-axis MRI. The framework incorporates four key modules for the localization of the landmark points. The first module crops the MR image around the heart using a convolutional neural network (CNN). The second module employs a U-Net to obtain an efficient feature representation of the cardiac image, as well as detect a preliminary location of the landmark points. In the third module, the feature representation of a cardiac image is processed with a Recurrent Neural Network (RNN). The RNN leverages either spatial or temporal dynamics from neighboring slides in time or space and obtains a second prediction for the landmark locations. In the last module the two predictions from the U-Net and RNN are combined and final locations for the landmarks are extracted. The framework is separately trained and evaluated for the localization of each landmark, it achieves a final average error of 2.87 mm for the mitral valve points and an average error of 3.64 mm for the right ventricular insert points. Our method shows that the use of a recurrent neural network for the modeling of additional temporal or spatial dependencies improves localization accuracy and achieves promising results.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMedical Imaging 2019
Subtitle of host publicationImage Processing
EditorsBennett A. Landman, Elsa D. Angelini
Place of PublicationBellingham
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9781510625457
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2019
EventMedical Imaging 2019: Image Processing - San Diego, United States
Duration: 19 Feb 201921 Feb 2019

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE


ConferenceMedical Imaging 2019: Image Processing
CountryUnited States
CitySan Diego


  • Cardiac Imaging
  • Convolutional Neural Network
  • Deep Learning
  • Recurrent Neural Network

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