MATLAB Answers

maha mohy

how to convert 2D image into 3D ??

Asked by maha mohy
on 8 Mar 2012
Latest activity Commented on by Image Analyst
on 1 Jun 2016

Hello everybody,my graduation project is about 3D mri visualization ,I want to convert 2D images into 3D ...could anyone help me plz


thanks all,@ Mr Walter I don't think they are registered cuz I extracted them from reference ,so what will I do to register them

try gray2rgb

@i have a similar project currently i have registered images from DICOM and need an algorithm / code to convert 64 slices into a 3D brain model.. can u plz help me! Walter Roberson


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2 Answers

Answer by Image Analyst
on 8 Mar 2012
 Accepted answer

try cat(3,...)

image3D = cat(3, slice1, slice2, slice3, slice4, slice5);

You could put it into a loop

for slice = 1 : totalNumberOfSlices
  thisSlice = GetSlice();  % Whatever you have to do to get one 2D image.
  if slice == 1
    image3D = thisSlice;
    image3D = cat(3, image3D, thisSlice);


MATLAB does not have powerful 3D visualization capabilities. For that you can use something like Amira. MATLAB has only basic slice views and isosurfaces.

oh that makes sense, what if the number of slices is unknown?

When is it unknown? Certainly when it's a 3-D variable in MATLAB the number of slices is known:

[rows, columns, numSlices] = size(array3D);

Answer by Walter Roberson
on 8 Mar 2012

The problem is not constructing the 3D array: the problem is displaying it. MATLAB does not have good voxel visualization routines. You could try


How did you decide that? Displaying is converting a 3D volumetric image into a 2D projection image - the opposite of what he said.

At my workplace we often build 3D MRI images from 2D MRI slices. MATLAB is okay for displaying the resulting datasets if you just want a planar slice, but it is far far below the 3-space imaging capabilities of some other products.

For example see
and look at the lower-left image in the "screen" in the middle foreground. Textured, shaded, cut-ins, real-time transparency control based upon data ranges so that you can see (e.g.) tumors and peer inside them...

I definitely agree that MATLAB doesn't have anywhere near the power of other programs in doing volumetric visualization.

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