A New Idea of Fast Three-Dimensional Median Filtering for Despeckling of Optical Coherence Tomography Images

Jarosław Gocławski, Joanna Sekulska-Nalewajko

Abstract


Median filtering has been widely used in image processing for noise removal because it can significantly reduce the power of noise while limiting edge blurring. This filtering is still a challenging task in the case of three-dimensional images containing up to a billion of voxels, especially for large size filtering windows. The authors encountered the problem when applying median filter to speckle noise reduction in optical coherence tomography images acquired by the Spark OCT systems. In the paper a new approach to the GPU based median smoothing has been proposed, which uses two-step evaluation of local intensity histograms stored in the shared memory of a graphic device. The solution is able to output about 50 million voxels per second while processing the neighbourhood of 125 voxels by Quadro K6000 graphic card configured on the Kepler architecture.

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