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Retinal Vessel Segmentation under Extreme Low Annotation: A Generative Adversarial Network Approach

by   Avisek Lahiri, et al.

Contemporary deep learning based medical image segmentation algorithms require hours of annotation labor by domain experts. These data hungry deep models perform sub-optimally in the presence of limited amount of labeled data. In this paper, we present a data efficient learning framework using the recent concept of Generative Adversarial Networks; this allows a deep neural network to perform significantly better than its fully supervised counterpart in low annotation regime. The proposed method is an extension of our previous work with the addition of a new unsupervised adversarial loss and a structured prediction based architecture. To the best of our knowledge, this work is the first demonstration of an adversarial framework based structured prediction model for medical image segmentation. Though generic, we apply our method for segmentation of blood vessels in retinal fundus images. We experiment with extreme low annotation budget (0.8 - 1.6 DRIVE and STARE datasets, the proposed method outperforms our previous method and other fully supervised benchmark models by significant margins especially with very low number of annotated examples. In addition, our systematic ablation studies suggest some key recipes for successfully training GAN based semi-supervised algorithms with an encoder-decoder style network architecture.


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