Clinical value of machine learning-based interpretation of I-123 FP-CIT scans to detect Parkinson’s disease: a two-center study

M. Dotinga, J. D. van Dijk*, B. N. Vendel, C. H. Slump, A. T. Portman, J. A. van Dalen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
15 Downloads (Pure)


Purpose: Our aim was to develop and validate a machine learning (ML)-based approach for interpretation of I-123 FP-CIT SPECT scans to discriminate Parkinson’s disease (PD) from non-PD and to determine its generalizability and clinical value in two centers. Methods: We retrospectively included 210 consecutive patients who underwent I-123 FP-CIT SPECT imaging and had a clinically confirmed diagnosis. Linear support vector machine (SVM) was used to build a classification model to discriminate PD from non-PD based on I-123-FP-CIT striatal uptake ratios, age and gender of 90 patients. The model was validated on unseen data from the same center where the model was developed (n = 40) and consecutively on data from a different center (n = 80). Prediction performance was assessed and compared to the scan interpretation by expert physicians. Results: Testing the derived SVM model on the unseen dataset (n = 40) from the same center resulted in an accuracy of 95.0%, sensitivity of 96.0% and specificity of 93.3%. This was identical to the classification accuracy of nuclear medicine physicians. The model was generalizable towards the other center as prediction performance did not differ thereby obtaining an accuracy of 82.5%, sensitivity of 88.5% and specificity of 71.4% (p = NS). This was comparable to that of nuclear medicine physicians (p = NS). Conclusion: ML-based interpretation of I-123-FP-CIT scans results in accurate discrimination of PD from non-PD similar to visual assessment in both centers. The derived SVM model is therefore generalizable towards centers using comparable acquisition and image processing methods and implementation as diagnostic aid in clinical practice is encouraged.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)378-385
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of nuclear medicine
Issue number3
Early online date20 Jan 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2021


  • Artificial intelligence
  • I-123 FP-CIT
  • Machine learning
  • SVM-model


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