How far MS lesion detection and segmentation are integrated into the clinical workflow? A systematic review

Spagnolo F., Depeursinge A., Schädelin S., Akbulut A., Müller H., Barakovic M., ...More

NeuroImage: Clinical, vol.39, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Review
  • Volume: 39
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.nicl.2023.103491
  • Journal Name: NeuroImage: Clinical
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, MEDLINE, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Keywords: Lesion detection, Lesion segmentation, MRI, Multiple sclerosis, Systematic review
  • Ankara University Affiliated: No


Introduction: Over the past few years, the deep learning community has developed and validated a plethora of tools for lesion detection and segmentation in Multiple Sclerosis (MS). However, there is an important gap between validating models technically and clinically. To this end, a six-step framework necessary for the development, validation, and integration of quantitative tools in the clinic was recently proposed under the name of the Quantitative Neuroradiology Initiative (QNI). Aims: Investigate to what extent automatic tools in MS fulfill the QNI framework necessary to integrate automated detection and segmentation into the clinical neuroradiology workflow. Methods: Adopting the systematic Cochrane literature review methodology, we screened and summarised published scientific articles that perform automatic MS lesions detection and segmentation. We categorised the retrieved studies based on their degree of fulfillment of QNI's six-steps, which include a tool's technical assessment, clinical validation, and integration. Results: We found 156 studies; 146/156 (94%) fullfilled the first QNI step, 155/156 (99%) the second, 8/156 (5%) the third, 3/156 (2%) the fourth, 5/156 (3%) the fifth and only one the sixth. Conclusions: To date, little has been done to evaluate the clinical performance and the integration in the clinical workflow of available methods for MS lesion detection/segmentation. In addition, the socio-economic effects and the impact on patients’ management of such tools remain almost unexplored.