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Efficient skeletonization of volumetric objects

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2 Author(s)
Zhou, Y. ; Sch. of Med., California Univ., Los Angeles, CA, USA ; Toga, A.W.

Skeletonization promises to become a powerful tool for compact shape description, path planning and other applications. However, current techniques can seldom efficiently process real, complicated 3D data sets, such as MRI and CT data of human organs. In this paper, we present an efficient voxel coding-based algorithm for the skeletonization of 3D voxelized objects. The skeletons are interpreted as connected center lines, consisting of sequences of medial points of consecutive clusters. These center lines are initially extracted as paths of voxels, followed by medial point replacement, refinement, smoothing and connection operations. The voxel-coding techniques have been proposed for each of these operations in a uniform and systematic fashion. In addition to preserving basic connectivity and centeredness, the algorithm is characterized by straightforward computation, no sensitivity to object boundary complexity, explicit extraction of ready-to-parameterize and branch-controlled skeletons, and efficient object hole detection. These issues are rarely discussed in traditional methods. A range of 3D medical MRI and CT data sets were used for testing the algorithm, demonstrating its utility

Published in:

Visualization and Computer Graphics, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:5 ,  Issue: 3 )

Date of Publication:

Jul-Sep 1999

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