Low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) is desirable for both diagnostic imaging and image-guided interventions. Denoisers are widely used to improve the quality of LDCT. Deep learning (DL)-based denoisers have shown state-of-the-art performance and are becoming mainstream methods. However, there are two challenges to using DL-based denoisers: 1) a trained model typically does not generate different image candidates with different noise-resolution tradeoffs, which are sometimes needed for different clinical tasks; and 2) the model's generalizability might be an issue when the noise level in the testing images differs from that in the training dataset. To address these two challenges, in this work, we introduce a lightweight optimization process that can run on top of any existing DL-based denoiser during the testing phase to generate multiple image candidates with different noise-resolution tradeoffs suitable for different clinical tasks in real time. Consequently, our method allows users to interact with the denoiser to efficiently review various image candidates and quickly pick the desired one; thus, we termed this method deep interactive denoiser (DID). Experimental results demonstrated that DID can deliver multiple image candidates with different noise-resolution tradeoffs and shows great generalizability across various network architectures, as well as training and testing datasets with various noise levels.
- Deep learning
- computed tomography
- image denoising
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
- Computer Science Applications
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering