A Glimpse into the Future: How AI Technology Will Affect Radiology

A Glimpse into the Future: How AI Technology Will Affect Radiology | blog article by Catalina Imaging

Continuous advancements in technology are starting to fuel discussions about how machines will eventually replace humans. This line of thinking has reached even the medical field, as innovations in radiology continue to prop up the belief that radiologists will one day lose their jobs to AI-driven technology.

The concept of machines causing radiologists to become obsolete is fallacious, if not laughable. Radiology is among the fastest-growing fields in the last decade, and the number of radiologists has been steadily increasing over that time. Despite this increase in numbers, some countries are still short on radiologists, giving you an idea of how much demand there is for the profession.

AI Will Reinforce, Not Replace Radiologists

Artificial intelligence will undoubtedly reshape how radiologists do their job, but it can never replace them. Dr. Curtis P. Langlotz, a professor at Stanford University’s radiology department, says that this mentality is a result of how people have oversimplified what radiologists do. One of the most common misconceptions about radiologists is that their work only involves analyzing images.

“A comprehensive catalog of radiology diagnoses lists nearly 20,000 terms for disorders and imaging observations and over 50,000 causal relations. Algorithms that can help diagnose common conditions are a major step forward, but an experienced radiologist is looking for numerous conditions all at once. Only some of these assessments can be performed with AI,” Langlotz explains.

Immediate Changes Ahead

Efficiency is one of the most important aspects of radiology. Fast and effective processing means people will have to wait for less to receive scans and the necessary treatment, which can save thousands of lives through early detection and medication. With the help of new AI technology, radiologists can be alerted to acute conditions in a timely manner, accelerating the time it takes to solve a particular case.

The impact of AI on radiology can best be compared to how autopilot technology affected commercial flights. The innovations on flight systems allowed repetitive and easy tasks such as safety checks and collision-avoidance systems to be fully automated, but the pilots were still there to take over manually when there’s an unforeseen glitch or malfunction in the system.

The same applies to AI technology in radiology. While the new systems will definitely make several detection tasks easier, the radiologist will still be the one to offer a qualified oversight over the diagnostic processes. As AI develops and learns more about the functions of various radiology duties, the radiologist can delegate more tasks to better focus on the patient’s needs.

AI should not be seen as a threat to radiologists. Instead, AI should be embraced and adapted so that patients can receive better quality care while strengthening the industry further.

(Source: WeForum.org)


Israeli Startup Uses AI and Deep Learning to Create Life-Saving Stroke Detection Platform

Israeli Startup Uses AI and Deep Learning to Create Life-Saving Stroke Detection Platform | blog article by Catalina Imaging

Suffering a stroke is a serious medical emergency, and it’s important to receive immediate medical attention to avoid any permanent damages. A stroke detection platform developed by a Tel Aviv-based medical imaging business can significantly improve the chances of a successful recovery from a stroke by quickly detecting what caused it.

A stroke is defined as a sudden interruption in the brain’s blood supply, typically caused by an abrupt blockage of the arteries that lead to the brain. Another common cause of a stroke is when a blood vessel bursts and bleeds into the brain tissue.

Suffering a stroke can significantly affect how the body functions. Depending on which area and side of your brain are affected, a stroke patient might experience difficulty with his (or her) movement and sensation, eating and swallowing, vision, perception and awareness, cognitive abilities such as reasoning and memory, and sexual ability.

When a person suffers a stroke, the response time is crucial in preventing further damages to the body. Being able to detect and locate a blocked artery or rupture that hinders blood flow to the brain as fast as possible can save the patient from possible disabilities.

Israeli medical imaging startup Viz.ai has launched a stroke detection platform that utilizes artificial intelligence to detect the source of a stroke in just a few seconds. This breakthrough allows patients to receive immediate medical care and avoid severe health consequences.

Viz.ai’s stroke detection platform uses deep learning technology to find suspected large vessel occlusions in the blood vessels that carry oxygen-rich blood to the head and brain. These occlusions are usually found in the carotid arteries, which accounts for 20% of stroke patients. Andrew Colbert, senior marketing manager at Viz.ai, notes that by using their technology to effectively diagnose the cause of the stroke, the patients can receive quicker treatment for better chances of recovery.

Colbert says that Viz.ai’s technology “provides easy to use synchronized and secure technologies to healthcare providers while helping to give patients access to the right doctor at the right time.” Once the platform has identified the cause of the stroke, the computer-aided triage software connects patients directly to a medical specialist to receive the necessary medical management.

As of November 2019, Viz.ai’s stroke detection platform has been utilized in more than 300 US hospitals.

(Source: NoCamels.com)

Restarting Radiology Services Amid the COVID-19 Pandemic

Restarting Radiology Services Amid the COVID-19 Pandemic | blog article by Catalina Imaging

After a sharp decline in radiology services, the University of Cincinnati Health followed a data-driven and team-based method to help increase the numbers back up again. The ‘Recover Wisely’ program was launched last May 4 and since then, UHC has been gaining momentum and was able to hit an overall 102% recovery rate.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, many industries have been affected. Back when most services were halted and delayed, UC Health started trying to find ways to reschedule missed appointments and adjusting to the new normal. At first, there was a shocking decline of 53%-55% in nonurgent radiology services. Around 30,000 imaging appointments were rescheduled. The team at the University of Cincinnati Health then decided to have a more data-driven approach, thus, the ‘Recover Wisely’ program was set in motion.

To be able to assure the best care in the safest way possible, simulations were done along with ‘meticulous monitoring and control.’ There was a big amount of backlog, but updates were given to the clients as the program was being slowly rolled out. By week 10, UHC saw a 102% recovery rate compared to pre-COVID numbers, obtaining 172 cases per week.

According to Achala Vagal, MD, together with the UC Health Department of Radiology and 15 other co-authors, “Longer term recovery planning needs to include the possibility of a second or seasonal surge of COVID-19. However, the principles of Recover Wisely should apply to any rescheduling and recovery strategy.” The team also added, “In the dire situation, if a large-scale shutdown occurs again, other departments will find our experience and resumption strategies helpful.”

With this program in place, several modalities had a significantly higher rate compared to others: with MRI at 101%, interventional radiology at 106%, CT at 113%, and nuclear medicine at a soaringly high percentage at 138%.

UC Health believes that a strategy of tailored communication, cross-disciplinary teamwork, and innovative solutions will help them with any bumps in the road that may come next as the battle against the COVID-19 pandemic still isn’t over.

(Source: Radiology Business)

From UC Health: New Mobile Units to Deliver Clot-Busting Drugs to Stroke Patients

From UC Health: New Mobile Units to Deliver Clot-Busting Drugs to Stroke Patients | blog article by Catalina Imaging

UC Health has acquired new state-of-the-art mobile units that would help them respond to stroke emergencies faster than ever.

The new mobile stroke units, which cost $1 Million worth of training and equipment a piece, are aimed to provide stroke patients the clot-busting drugs they need to get a better chance of recovery and survival much faster. The first unit was dispatched in the Cincinnati region last August 11, and it is only the 23rd of its kind in the whole nation.

In the Cincinnati region, 45 minutes is the average time that stroke patients receive clot-busting medication after their arrival at the hospital. However, the new mobile unit is equipped with a CT scanner and the clot-busting medication tissue plasminogen activator.

The unit deploys with a paramedic trained in mobile care, an emergency medical technician, a critical care nurse, and a CT technician. The unit can reach a stroke doctor via telemedicine and provide hospital-level care in case of an emergency.

According to Dr. Joseph Broderick, director of the UC Gardner Neuroscience Institute, the unit can “shorten the time between the onset of stroke-like symptoms and the delivery of clot-busting medication.”

“Millions of brain cells die every minute that stroke treatment is delayed, and research shows that mobile stroke units can provide treatment 20 to 30 minutes faster than in an emergency department,” Dr. Broderick added.

The Springfield Township Fire Department, located at 9150 Winton Road, Finneytown, will be the base of the unit. Hamilton County’s 911 call center will be the dispatcher of the unit upon emergencies. People can request the service from 7 am to 7 pm every day, including holidays. The mobile stroke unit will respond to calls within a 15-minute radius and take the patients to the nearest proper medical center.

Amanda Naigeleisen, UC Health’s spokeswoman, admitted that they had been planning to roll out the unit last March, but due to the on-going coronavirus pandemic, they were forced to delay the unit’s start until August.

(Source: Cincinnati.com)