Active contours for overlapping cervical cell segmentation
by Flávio H.D. Araújo; Romuere R.V. Silva; Fátima N.S. Medeiros; Jeová Farias Rocha Neto; Paulo Henrique Calaes Oliveira; Andrea G. Campos Bianchi; Daniela Ushizima
International Journal of Biomedical Engineering and Technology (IJBET), Vol. 35, No. 1, 2021

Abstract: The nuclei and cytoplasm segmentation of cervical cells is a well studied problem. However, the current segmentation algorithms are not robust to clinical practice due to the high computational cost or because they cannot accurately segment cells with high overlapping. In this paper, we propose a method that is capable of segmenting both cytoplasm and nucleus of each individual cell in a clump of overlapping cells. The proposed method consists of three steps: 1) cellular mass segmentation; 2) nucleus segmentation; 3) cytoplasm identification based on an active contour method. We carried out experiments on both synthetic and real cell images. The performance evaluation of the proposed method showed that it was less sensitive to the increase in the number of cells per image and the overlapping ratio against two other existing algorithms. It has also achieved a promising low processing time and, hence, it has the potential to support expert systems for cervical cell recognition.

Online publication date: Sun, 07-Feb-2021

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