Color Retinal Image Enhancement Based on
Luminosity and Contrast Adjustment
Abstract– Many common eye diseases and cardiovascular diseases can be diagnosed through retinal imaging. However, due to uneven illumination, image blurring, and low contrast, retinal images with poor quality are not useful for diagnosis, especially in automated image analyzing systems. Here we propose a new image enhancement method to improve color retinal image luminosity and contrast. Methods: A luminance gain matrix, which is obtained by gamma correction of the value channel in the HSV (Hue, Saturation, and Value) color space, is used to enhance the R, G, and B (Red, Green and Blue) channels, respectively. Contrast is then enhanced in the luminosity channel of L*a*b* color space by CLAHE (contrast limited adaptive histogram equalization). Image enhancement by the proposed method is compared to other methods by evaluating quality scores of the enhanced images. Results: The performance of the method
is mainly validated on a dataset of 961 poor quality retinal images. Quality assessment (range 0-1) of image enhancement of this poor dataset indicated that our method improved color retinal image quality from an average of 0.0404 (standard deviation 0.0291) up to an average of 0.4565 (standard deviation 0.1000). Conclusion: The proposed method is shown to achieve superior image enhancement compared to contrast enhancement in other color spaces or by other related methods, while simultaneously preserving image naturalness. Significance: This method of color retinal image enhancement may be employed to assist ophthalmologists in more efficient screening of retinal diseases and in development of improved automated image analysis for clinical diagnosis.
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