Many medical and real images are suffered from intensity inhomogeneity and weak edges. For higher image segmentation quality, lots of level set-based methods have been proposed. Some of them however cannot take advantage of image gradient information. And severe intensity inhomogeneity and weak edges are not disposed properly. To address these problems, a new level set method integrated with local direction gradient information is presented in this paper. Firstly, according to the two assumptions on image intensity inhomogeneity adopted by many existing methods, a new pixel classification model based on image gradient is introduced. Secondly, we employ variational level set method combined with image spatial information, which improves the anti-noise capability of the proposed method. Finally, considering the gray gradients in homogeneous regions are close to constants, an improved diffusion process is incorporated into the level set function to make the evolving curves stay around true image edges. To verify our method, different testing images including synthetic images, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and real-world images are introduced. The image segmentation results demonstrate that our method can deal with the relatively severe intensity inhomogeneity and obtain the comparatively ideal segmentation results efficiently.
Multimedia Tools and Applications – Springer Journals
Published: May 31, 2018
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