Muhammad Laiq Ur Rahman Shahid


PhD Scholar


Office: 123, Research I
Address: Campus Ring 1, 28759 Bremen, Germany
Telephone: (+49-421) 200-3188



Upper Airway Segmentation from MRI Data for Obstructive Sleep Apnea Analysis

Sleeping disorders such as obstructive sleep apnea are public health problems affecting at least 2-4% of the middle-aged population. However, the pathogenesis of this problem is poorly understood. Obstructive sleep apnea is characterized by repeated collapsing of the soft tissue structures of the throat. Volumetric analysis of these structures can explain the anatomic risk factors for such disorders. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), as a non-radiation based examination method, which offers a good contrast between soft tissue structures, is utilized to analyze throat tissues. Manual segmentation is a laborious, observer-dependent, and time-consuming process. Therefore, full automatic segmentation of pharyngeal structures is required.

We propose to develop a context-based automatic algorithm for segmenting pharynx from MR images, which would form the basis for inspecting obstructive sleep apnea. This approach will use prior knowledge about the topology and geometry of the segmented structure. Furthermore, slices which are difficult to delineate independently can be solved by propagating results from neighboring slices. In addition to this, we’ll extend the algorithm for segmentation of other soft tissues in the throat, namely, fat pads. There is another challenge to optimize the segmentation technique in terms of time as we have to apply our algorithms to population-based epidemiological studies, such as Study of Health in Pomerania (SHIP) which provide a high amount of data.

The basic idea of our method has already been tested on MRI sequences with promising results. We’ll also develop a procedure to early diagnose sleeping disorder in a potential patient by incorporating the knowledge of epidemiological studies.



  • Muhammad Laiq Ur Rahman Shahid, Teodora Chitiboi, Tatyana Ivanovska, Vladimir Molchanov, Henry Völzke, Horst K. Hahn and Lars Linsen: Automatic Pharynx Segmentation from MRI Data for Obstructive Sleep Apnea Analysis.
  • Tatyana Ivanovska, R. Laqua, Muhammad Laiq Ur Rahman Shahid, Lars Linsen, K. Hegenscheid and Henry Völzke: Automatic Pharynx Segmentation from MRI Data for Analysis of Sleep Related Disorders.


  • Muhammad Laiq Ur Rahman Shahid and Gulistan Raja: Implementation of Modified Control Point Image Registration Method.