Inter-rater reliability for assessing intracranial collaterals in patients with acute ischemic stroke: comparing 29 raters and an artificial intelligence-based software

on behalf of the MR CLEAN investigators

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Purpose: Outcome of endovascular treatment in acute ischemic stroke patients is depending on the collateral circulation maintaining blood flow to the ischemic territory. We evaluated the inter-rater reliability and accuracy of raters and an automated algorithm for assessing the collateral score (CS, range: 0–3) in acute ischemic stroke patients. Methods: Baseline CTA scans with an intracranial anterior occlusion from the MR CLEAN study (n=500) were used. For each core lab CS, ten CTA scans with sufficient quality were randomly selected. After a training session in collateral scoring, all selected CTA scans were individually evaluated for a visual CS by three groups: 7 radiologists, 13 junior and 9 senior radiology residents. Two additional radiologists scored CS to be used as reference, with a third providing a CS to produce a 2 out of 3 consensus CS in case of disagreement. An automated algorithm was also used to compute CS. Inter-rater agreement was reported with intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC). Accuracy of visual and automated CS were calculated. Results: 39 CTA scans were assessed (1 corrupt CTA-scan excluded). All groups showed a moderate ICC (0.689-0.780) in comparison to the reference standard. Overall human accuracy was 65± 7% and increased to 88± 5% for dichotomized CS (0–1, 2–3). Automated CS accuracy was 62%, and 90% for dichotomized CS. No significant difference in accuracy was found between groups with different levels of expertise. Conclusion: After training, inter-rater reliability in collateral scoring was not influenced by experience. Automated CS performs similar to residents and radiologists in determining a collateral score.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2277-2284
Number of pages8
Issue number12
Early online date2022
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


  • Algorithms
  • Collateral circulation
  • Consensus
  • Ischemic stroke
  • Reproducibility of results

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