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Abstract #4436

Measuring Cross Sectional Area of the Spinal Cord at 7T: Validating Fully Automated Segmentation

Benjamin N Conrad 1 , Bailey D Lyttle 2 , Siddharama Pawate 3 , Robert L Barry 1,4 , Bennett A Landman 1,5 , and Seth A Smith 1,4

1 Vanderbilt University Institute of Imaging Science, Nashville, TN, United States, 2 Neuroscience, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN, United States, 3 Neurology, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN, United States, 4 Radiology and Radiological Sciences, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN, United States, 5 Electrical Engineering, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN, United States

Spinal cord atrophy is a clinical symptom associated with many diseases, including multiple sclerosis. The most commonly reported measure of atrophy involves estimation of the cross sectional area (CSA) of the cord from anatomical MRI. Advances in image acquisition and segmentation methods are converging to allow for reliable, fully automated techniques for assessing CSA. The current analysis validates a recently developed automatic labeling scheme using T2*-weighted images by comparing estimated CSA in MS patients and healthy controls versus a standard, semi-automated estimation using T1-weighted images.

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