AI ALGORITHM SAVING LIVES
Researchers from the Cedars-Sinai Medical Centre Los Angeles, California have developed an artificially intelligent algorithm that can “accurately measure plaque deposits in coronary arteries and predict a patient’s risk of suffering a heart attack within five years.”
Further fine-tuning is required before rolling out the new technology to medical clinics. But if approved, the technology will allow doctors to diagnose patients with cardiovascular issues in a blisteringly fast time; seconds to be exact.
Doctors typically use what is called a “computed tomography angiography (CTA)” to evaluate heart disease patients. This method of analysis has been shown to be the most effective method of measuring plaque build up in a patient’s coronary arteries and predicting heart attack risk.
Deep-learning researchers trained the algorithm to evaluate “the prognostic value of deep learning-based plaque measurements for fatal or non-fatal myocardial infarction,” using 921 heart disease patients’ CTA scan data sets.
This resulted in the algorithm delivering results “close to complete agreement” with expert cardiologists.
HEART ATTACK RISK CATEGORY
This algorithm is capable of categorising patients into a high-risk category and low-risk category for heart attack risk within a 5-year period after receiving a CTA scan.
“…our study represents the first validation of a deep learning approach for atherosclerotic quantification from CCTA using invasive reference standards, and is the first demonstration of the predictive value of deep learning-based plaque measurements for risk of cardiac events,” the study authors wrote.
Research published in the peer-reviewed JAMA Network Open journal found that the mortality rate of heart disease increased by 16 per cent between 2019 and 2020. The researchers attributed this increase mostly to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Many hope the development of this AI technology gets fast-tracked, due to the high cost of traditional CTA scanning. But until further research is conducted on a larger and more diverse sample, this technology will likely remain under wraps. So don’t get too excited – yet.
FURTHER AI ADVANCES
The University of Western Australia announced in 2021 that they were developing an AI tool capable of predicting coronary heart disease, after receiving $896,606 through a Medical Research Future Fund Frontiers grant.
This tool “could spell a medical breakthrough for people suffering from, or at risk of, coronary artery disease, the single leading cause of death in Australia,” wrote the university.
“Our artificial intelligence-based risk prediction system will be able to define groups based on heart CT scans and will identify patients at risk of heart attack and also those who would most benefit from treatment,” said Professor Girish Dwivedi in response to the announcement.
This is certainly a space flourishing with significant medical and technological breakthroughs. With the medical cohort becoming more interested in increasing their work efficiency, AI research has been embraced with open arms.
Original story by New Atlas.