Computer Assisted Optical Assessment of Small Colorectal Polyps

2015-08-14 19:08:26 | BioPortfolio


The aim of the study is to develop a computer program which is able to distinguish between adenomatous and non- adenomatous polyps on the basis of optical features of the polyps. Still images of polyps (< 10 mm of size) will be collected during routine colonoscopy procedures. All polyps will be resected endoscopically so that histopathological diagnoses (gold standard) can be notified.

In the validation phase of the study a computer program will be established which aims to distinguish between adenomatous and non- adenomatous polyps on the basis of optical features derived from still images. The program will operated using the the random forest learning method. Afterwards, in the testing phase of the study, still images of 100 polyps (not used in the validation phase) will be presented to the computer program. The establishment of a well- functioning computer program is the primary aim of the study.


Adenomas are polyps of the colorectum that have the potential to develop into colon cancer [1]. However, some adenomas never become malignant and if they do, progression from adenoma into cancer usually takes a long time. As a result, screening colonoscopy programs were established in order to detect and resect adenomas at an early stage [2]. After resection, polyps should be sent to pathology in order to make a histological diagnosis. Not every colorectal polyp has adenomatous histology. Approximately 40-50% of all polyps contain other benign histology (e.g. hyperplastic or inflammatory polyps). These polyps do not bear the risk of colon cancer.

The implementation of screening programs has led to increasing numbers of colonoscopies in the last years [3]. This approach naturally implies higher amounts of detected polyps. The removal of these polyps and consultation of a pathologist in order to make a diagnosis is time consuming and expensive. An optical- based prediction of polyp histology (adenomatous versus non- adenomatous) would enable endoscopists to save money and to inform patients faster about examination results. The approach of predicting polyp histology on the basis of optical features is called the "optical biopsy" method. The prediction is made by the endoscopists during real-time colonoscopy. The aim of this strategy is to make an optical diagnosis which enables users to resect polyps without sending the specimen to pathology. Narrow Band Imaging (NBI) is a light-filter device which can be switched on during colonoscopy. NBI is useful to better display vascular patterns of the colon mucosa. It has been shown that the use of NBI can facilitate optical classification of colorectal polyps [5]. A NBI- based classification schemes exists which can be used to assign polyps into specific polyp categories (adenomatous versus non- adenomatous) [6].

Prior to the implementation of the optical classification approach for routine use in endoscopy it is necessary to proof its feasibility and accuracy [7]. Otherwise the approach would entail the risk of wrong diagnoses which could lead to wrong recommendations on further diagnostic or therapeutic steps.

Until now, some clinical trials have shown good accuracy for the optical biopsy method [5]. However, there is growing evidence that optical biopsy does not yet meet demanded accuracy thresholds [8]. The aim of our study is to create a computer program that is able to distinguish between adenomatous and non-adenomatous polyps. Still images of colorectal polyps including NBI- pictures of polyps will be used for machine learning (validation phase). Afterwards a set of 100 still pictures will be used to test whether the computer program is able to distinguish between adenomatous and non- adenomatous polyps (primary endpoint). Statistical measures (accuracy, sensitivity, specificity) will be calculated.

Study Design

Observational Model: Cohort, Time Perspective: Prospective


Colonic Polyps


Photography of polyps, resection of polyps


II Medizinische Klinik am Klinikum rechts der Isar der Technischen Universität München München, Deutschland Germany




Technische Universität München

Results (where available)

View Results


Published on BioPortfolio: 2015-08-14T19:08:26-0400

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Medical and Biotech [MESH] Definitions

Discrete tissue masses that protrude into the lumen of the COLON. These POLYPS are connected to the wall of the colon either by a stalk, pedunculus, or by a broad base.

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The growth of INTESTINAL POLYPS. Growth processes include neoplastic (ADENOMA and CARCINOMA) and non-neoplastic (hyperplastic, mucosal, inflammatory, and other polyps).

Discrete abnormal tissue masses that protrude into the lumen of the DIGESTIVE TRACT or the RESPIRATORY TRACT. Polyps can be spheroidal, hemispheroidal, or irregular mound-shaped structures attached to the MUCOUS MEMBRANE of the lumen wall either by a stalk, pedunculus, or by a broad base.

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