Revolutionizing Healthcare: The Emerging Role of AI

JJohn August 2, 2023 7:12 AM

UK's National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) has released a series of studies highlighting the transformative potential of artificial intelligence in the healthcare sector. From diagnosing heart diseases to predicting hospital bed demand, AI is poised to address key health challenges.

AI-enabled Stethoscope Revolutionizing Heart Failure Diagnosis

Heart diseases, particularly heart failures, pose a significant health challenge. Traditional diagnosis usually takes place in hospitals, but the advent of AI is poised to change this. A smart stethoscope, aided by artificial intelligence, has shown great promise. It accurately identified heart failure nine out of 10 times in primary care settings. This invention could assist general practitioners in triaging referrals, improve patient outcomes, and reduce overall healthcare costs.

AI in Early Lung Cancer Detection

Lung cancer remains a leading cause of cancer deaths worldwide. Early and accurate diagnosis is vital for improving patient outcomes. Recent studies have demonstrated the potential of AI in this regard. Different AI models were applied to CT scans to determine if abnormal growths were cancerous. These models outperformed the standard Brock score used by most professionals, suggesting that AI could be used to diagnose lung cancer earlier and potentially save lives.

Disease progression is another area where AI could make a significant impact. A study involving over 2,500 people found that AI was more accurate than five out of six experts in predicting the development of wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a leading cause of vision loss, in the second eye of patients already diagnosed with AMD in one eye. This could lead to earlier interventions and better management of the disease.

Fast-tracking Personalized Treatment with AI

AI has the potential to revolutionize personalized treatment. In cancer care, for example, AI could help doctors determine the most beneficial drug combinations for patients in as little as 12 hours. This fast-tracked process could result in improved patient outcomes, particularly with targeted anti-cancer drugs. Additionally, an AI tool has shown capacity to predict the risk of death in the month after surgery for Covid-19 patients undergoing surgeries.

As healthcare systems face increasing pressures, AI could play a vital role in optimizing resources. Researchers have developed an AI model that accurately predicted, in eight out of 10 cases, which patients did not need to attend emergency departments. The model was based on an analysis of 100,000 linked ambulance and emergency care records. It could assist in managing resources more effectively. Furthermore, AI could help predict demand for hospital beds, aiding in better hospital planning and management.

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