Accurate 3D-reconstruction and -navigation for high-precision minimal-invasive interventions
El Hakimi, Wissam
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The current lateral skull base surgery is largely invasive since it requires wide exposure and direct visualization of anatomical landmarks to avoid damaging critical structures. A multi-port approach aiming to reduce such invasiveness has been recently investigated. Thereby three canals are drilled from the skull surface to the surgical region of interest: the first canal for the instrument, the second for the endoscope, and the third for material removal or an additional instrument. The transition to minimal invasive approaches in the lateral skull base surgery requires sub-millimeter accuracy and high outcome predictability, which results in high requirements for the image acquisition as well as for the navigation. Computed tomography (CT) is a non-invasive imaging technique allowing the visualization of the internal patient organs. Planning optimal drill channels based on patient-specific models requires high-accurate three-dimensional (3D) CT images. This thesis focuses on the reconstruction of high quality CT volumes. Therefore, two conventional imaging systems are investigated: spiral CT scanners and C-arm cone-beam CT (CBCT) systems. Spiral CT scanners acquire volumes with typically anisotropic resolution, i.e. the voxel spacing in the slice-selection-direction is larger than the in-the-plane spacing. A new super-resolution reconstruction approach is proposed to recover images with high isotropic resolution from two orthogonal low-resolution CT volumes. C-arm CBCT systems offers CT-like 3D imaging capabilities while being appropriate for interventional suites. A main drawback of these systems is the commonly encountered CT artifacts due to several limitations in the imaging system, such as the mechanical inaccuracies. This thesis contributes new methods to enhance the CBCT reconstruction quality by addressing two main reconstruction artifacts: the misalignment artifacts caused by mechanical inaccuracies, and the metal-artifacts caused by the presence of metal objects in the scanned region. CBCT scanners are appropriate for intra-operative image-guided navigation. For instance, they can be used to control the drill process based on intra-operatively acquired 2D fluoroscopic images. For a successful navigation, accurate estimate of C-arm pose relative to the patient anatomy and the associated surgical plan is required. A new algorithm has been developed to fulfill this task with high-precision. The performance of the introduced methods is demonstrated on simulated and real data.