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Detecting the corneal neovascularisation area using artificial intelligence

Burak Mergen; Tarek Safi; Matthias Nadig; Gopal Bhattrai; Loay Daas; Jan Alexandersson; Berthold Seitz
In: British Journal of Ophthalmology (BJO), BMJ Publishing Group Ltd, 2023.


Aims To create and assess the performance of an artificial intelligence-based image analysis tool for the measurement and quantification of the corneal neovascularisation (CoNV) area.Methods Slit lamp images of patients with CoNV were exported from the electronic medical records and included in the study. An experienced ophthalmologist made manual annotations of the CoNV areas, which were then used to create, train and evaluate an automated image analysis tool that uses deep learning to segment and detect CoNV areas. A pretrained neural network (U-Net) was used and fine-tuned on the annotated images. Sixfold cross-validation was used to evaluate the performance of the algorithm on each subset of 20 images. The main metric for our evaluation was intersection over union (IoU).Results The slit lamp images of 120 eyes of 120 patients with CoNV were included in the analysis. Detections of the total corneal area achieved IoU between 90.0% and 95.5% in each fold and those of the non-vascularised area achieved IoU between 76.6% and 82.2%. The specificity for the detection was between 96.4% and 98.6% for the total corneal area and 96.6% and 98.0% for the non-vascularised area.Conclusion The proposed algorithm showed a high accuracy compared with the measurement made by an ophthalmologist. The study suggests that an automated tool using artificial intelligence may be used for the calculation of the CoNV area from the slit-lamp images of patients with CoNV.Data are available on reasonable request.


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