Differential Diagnosing of Papillary Thyroid Carcinomas in Cytological Images with A VGG-16 Deep Convolutional Neural Network Model: A Pilot Study

    • Presentation Speakers / Moderators

    OBJECTIVE: In this study, we exploited a VGG-16 deep convolutional neural network (DCNN) model to differentiate papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC) from benign thyroid nodules using cytological images.

    METHODS: A pathology-proven dataset was composed of 279 cytological images of thyroid nodules. The images were cropped into fragmented images and divided into a training dataset and a test dataset. VGG-16 and Inception-v3 DCNNs were trained and tested to make differential diagnoses. The characteristics of tumor cell nucleus were quantified as contours, perimeter, area and mean of pixel intensity and compared using independent Student’s t-tests.

    RESULTS: In the test group, the accuracy rates of the VGG-16 model and Inception-v3 on fragmented images were 97.66% and 92.75%, respectively, and the accuracy rates of VGG-16 and Inception-v3 in patients were 95% and 87.5% patient wisely. The contours, perimeter, area and mean of pixel intensity of PTC in fragmented images were more than the benign nodules, which were 61.01±17.10 vs 47.00±24.08, p=0.000, 134.99±21.42 vs 62.40±29.15, p=0.000, 1770.89±627.22 vs 1157.27±722.23, p=0.013, 165.84±26.33 vs 132.94±28.73, p=0.000), respectively.

    CONCLUSION: With training of a large dataset, the DCNN VGG-16 model showed great potential in facilitating PTC diagnosis from cytological images. The contours, perimeter, area and mean of pixel intensity of PTC in fragmented images were more than the benign nodules.

 

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