To assess the inter session reproducibility of automatic segmented MRI-derived measures by FreeSurfer in a group of subjects with normal-appearing MR images.After retrospectively reviewing a brain MRI database from our institute consisting of 14,758 adults, those subjects who had repeat scans and had no history of neurodegenerative disorders were selected for morphometry analysis using FreeSurfer. A total of 34 subjects were grouped by MRI scanner model. After automatic segmentation using FreeSurfer, label-wise comparison (involving area, thickness, and volume) was performed on all segmented results. An intraclass correlation coefficient was used to estimate the agreement between sessions. Wilcoxon signed rank test was used to assess the population mean rank differences across sessions. Mean-difference analysis was used to evaluate the difference intervals across scanners. Absolute percent difference was used to estimate the reproducibility errors across the MRI models. Kruskal-Wallis test was used to determine the across-scanner effect.The agreement in segmentation results for area, volume, and thickness measurements of all segmented anatomical labels was generally higher in Signa Excite and Verio models when compared with Sonata and TrioTim models. There were significant rank differences found across sessions in some labels of different measures. Smaller difference intervals in global volume measurements were noted on images acquired by Signa Excite and Verio models. For some brain regions, significant MRI model effects were observed on certain segmentation results.Short-term scan-rescan reliability of automatic brain MRI morphometry is feasible in the clinical setting. However, since repeatability of software performance is contingent on the reproducibility of the scanner performance, the scanner performance must be calibrated before conducting such studies or before using such software for retrospective reviewing
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