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Fractal analysis of the retinal vascular network in fundus images.

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Western General Hospital, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, EH4 2XU, UK.


Complexity of the retinal vascular network is quantified through the measurement of fractal dimension. A computerized approach enhances and segments the retinal vasculature in digital fundus images with an accuracy of 94% in comparison to the gold standard of manual tracing. Fractal analysis was performed on skeletonized versions of the network in 40 images from a study of stroke. Mean fractal dimension was found to be 1.398 (with standard deviation 0.024) from 20 images of the hypertensives sub-group and 1.408 (with standard deviation 0.025) from 18 images of the non-hypertensives subgroup. No evidence of a significant difference in the results was found for this sample size. However, statistical analysis showed that to detect a significant difference at the level seen in the data would require a larger sample size of 88 per group.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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