Loss Functions Evaluation for Corneal Nerve Segmentation

Loss Functions Evaluation for Corneal Nerve Segmentation

Loss Functions Evaluation for Corneal Nerve Segmentation

Corneal confocal microscopy (CCM) has been advocated as a non-invasive technique for objective diagnosis of very early neuropathy in patients by scanning the corneal subbasal nerve plexus. The obtained images provide a range of research opportunities to be explored. Current research revolves around providing automated solutions for nerve segmentation in CCM images. A common problem in CCM nerve segmentation is that the total number of nerve pixels is much smaller than the total number of background pixels. Thus, accuracy is not a very suitable evaluation metric for this problem. At the same time, the loss function used in the deep learning network influences the performance of the network. It is an important constituent of a deep learning segmentation network. In this project, we address the problem of low sensitivity of nerves in automatic segmentation caused by imbalanced pixel distribution in the CCM images. We evaluate different loss functions for this problem.
A comparison is made between cross entropy, dice loss, and Tversky loss using the most popular CNN for biomedical image segmentation, U-Net.


Lead Principal Investigator (LPI):


  • Tooba Salahuddin, PhD student, Computer Science and Engineering Department, Qatar University (Email: t.salahuddin@qu.edu.qa)


  • T. Salahuddin and U. Qidwai, “Evaluation of Loss Functions for Segmentation of Corneal Nerves,” 2020 IEEE-EMBS Conference on Biomedical Engineering and Sciences (IECBES), 2021, pp. 533-537, doi: 10.1109/IECBES48179.2021.9398843..

Media & Dates


  • Started: October 2020
  • Ends: October 2021

Funding (if applicable)

Funded By:

  • Not Applicable

Collaborating Institution(s)

  • None

Datasets (if applicable)

  • The datasets are available upon request from the corresponding author of the following publications:

    M. A. Dabbah, J. Graham, M. Tavakoli, Y. Petropoulos, and R. A. Malik, “Nerve fibre extraction in confocal corneal microscopy images for human diabetic neuropathy detection using gabor filters,” Med. Image Underst. Anal., vol. 254–258, 2009

Source Code (if applicable)

  • Available upon request