Predicting the risk of rupture for vertebral aneurysm based on geometric features of blood vessels.

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A significant proportion of the adult population worldwide suffers from cerebral aneurysms. If left untreated, aneurysms may rupture and lead to fatal massive internal bleeding. On the other hand, treatment of aneurysms also involve significant risks. It is desirable, therefore, to have an objective tool that can be used to predict the risk of rupture and assist in surgical decision for operating on the aneurysms. Currently, such decisions are made mostly based on medical expertise of the healthcare team. In this paper, we investigate the possibility of using machine learning algorithms to predict rupture risk of vertebral artery fusiform aneurysms based on geometric features of the blood vessels surrounding but excluding the aneurysm. For each of the aneurysm images (12 ruptured and 25 unruptured), the vessel is segmented into distal and proximal parts by cross-sectional area and 382 non-aneurysm-related geometric features extracted. The decision tree model using two of the features (standard deviation of eccentricity of proximal vessel, and diameter at the distal endpoint) achieved 83.8% classification accuracy. Additionally, with support vector machine and logistic regression, we also achieved 83.8% accuracy with another set of two features (ratio of mean curvature between distal and proximal parts, and diameter at the distal endpoint). Combining the aforementioned three features with integration of curvature of proximal vessel and also ratio of mean cross-sectional area between distal and proximal parts, these models achieve an impressive 94.6% accuracy. These results strongly suggest the usefulness of geometric features in predicting the risk of rupture.





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Li, Shixuan, Ruiqi Pan, Arvind Gupta, Shixin Xu, Yibin Fang and Huaxiong Huang (2021). Predicting the risk of rupture for vertebral aneurysm based on geometric features of blood vessels. Royal Society open science, 8(8). p. 210392. 10.1098/rsos.210392 Retrieved from

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Shixin Xu

Assistant Professor of Mathematics at Duke Kunshan University

Shixin Xu is an Assistant Professor of Mathematics.   His research interests are machine learning and data-driven models for diseases,  multiscale modeling of complex fluids, Neurovascular coupling, homogenization theory, and numerical analysis.  The current projects he is working on are

  • image data-based for the prediction of hemorrhagic transformation in acute ischemic stroke,
  • electrodynamics modeling of saltatory conduction along a myelinated axon
  • electrochemical modeling
  • fluid-structure interaction with mass transportation and reaction

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