Added value of deep learning-based liver parenchymal CT volumetry for predicting major arterial injury after blunt hepatic trauma: a decision tree analysis

David Dreizin*, Tina Chen, Yuanyuan Liang, Yuyin Zhou, Fabio Paes, Yan Wang, Alan L. Yuille, Patrick Roth, Kathryn Champ, Guang Li, Ashley McLenithan, Jonathan J. Morrison

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Purpose: In patients presenting with blunt hepatic injury (BHI), the utility of CT for triage to hepatic angiography remains uncertain since simple binary assessment of contrast extravasation (CE) as being present or absent has only modest accuracy for major arterial injury on digital subtraction angiography (DSA). American Association for the Surgery of Trauma (AAST) liver injury grading is coarse and subjective, with limited diagnostic utility in this setting. Volumetric measurements of hepatic injury burden could improve prediction. We hypothesized that in a cohort of patients that underwent catheter-directed hepatic angiography following admission trauma CT, a deep learning quantitative visualization method that calculates % liver parenchymal disruption (the LPD index, or LPDI) would add value to CE assessment for prediction of major hepatic arterial injury (MHAI). Methods: This retrospective study included adult patients with BHI between 1/1/2008 and 5/1/2017 from two institutions that underwent admission trauma CT prior to hepatic angiography (n = 73). Presence (n = 41) or absence (n = 32) of MHAI (pseudoaneurysm, AVF, or active contrast extravasation on DSA) served as the outcome. Voxelwise measurements of liver laceration were derived using an existing multiscale deep learning algorithm trained on manually labeled data using cross-validation with a 75–25% split in four unseen folds. Liver volume was derived using a pre-trained whole liver segmentation algorithm. LPDI was automatically calculated for each patient by determining the percentage of liver involved by laceration. Classification and regression tree (CART) analyses were performed using a combination of automated LPDI measurements and either manually segmented CE volumes, or CE as a binary sign. Performance metrics for the decision rules were compared for significant differences with binary CE alone (the current standard of care for predicting MHAI), and the AAST grade. Results: 36% of patients (n = 26) had contrast extravasation on CT. Median [Q1–Q3] automated LPDI was 4.0% [1.0–12.1%]. 41/73 (56%) of patients had MHAI. A decision tree based on auto-LPDI and volumetric CE measurements (CEvol) had the highest accuracy (0.84, 95% CI 0.73–0.91) with significant improvement over binary CE assessment (0.68, 95% CI 0.57–0.79; p = 0.01). AAST grades at different cut-offs performed poorly for predicting MHAI, with accuracies ranging from 0.44–0.63. Decision tree analysis suggests an auto-LPDI cut-off of ≥ 12% for minimizing false negative CT exams when CE is absent or diminutive. Conclusion: Current CT imaging paradigms are coarse, subjective, and limited for predicting which BHIs are most likely to benefit from AE. LPDI, automated using deep learning methods, may improve objective personalized triage of BHI patients to angiography at the point of care.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2556-2566
Number of pages11
JournalAbdominal Radiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Blunt hepatic injury (BSI)
  • Computed tomography (CT)
  • Liver parenchymal disruption index (LPDI) deep learning (DL)
  • Quantitative imaging


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