Alphabet’s DeepMind can Detect Eye Diseases as well as Doctors

The AI firm derived from Google, DeepMind, has been working on a new way to detect threatening eye diseases. Finally, after working for two long years, the company is ready to show off its work. According to the company, its system can spot more than 50 variety of diseases as accurately as experienced doctors.

As DeepMind explains, they made it possible by a combination of two neural networks. It analyses optical coherence tomography (OCT) scans. OCT scans are 3D type of images that doctors use to detect signs of disease, bleeding, fluid deposits, and other issues.

Working of AI

First, the segmentation network functions to analyze the OCT scan. Segmentation network maps the different types of eye tissue along with any symptoms of eye disease it detects. After analyzing and mapping, classification network uses this map to diagnose the condition of patient and recommend suitable treatment.

Company made clear that system is designed in way that gives insight to clinicians into how the neural networks operate. Rather than simply interacting with a black box spitting out analysis results, doctors can have a look at the neural networks. Doctors can also look at the maps generated from the OCT scan and the suitable recommendations given by the system. Also, these recommendations are in form of percentage, so that clinicians can get clear idea about system’s confidence in results.

In no time, we could expect the AI into service to reduce the time taken by doctors to manually analyze OCT scans. Also, delays in diagnosing time-sensitive issues can also be prevented using this AI.

Final verdict

According to the report of the Moorfields Eye Hospital in the UK, about 285 million people around the world suffer from some sort of visual impairment. So, DeepMind’s AI could benefit a lot of eyeballs around the world.

DeepMind also said that its tech could function with different types of eye scanners. So, it could help a large number of people with different kind of eye problems.

The company has just finished its first phase of research partnership with Moorfields. After passing clinical trials, the system will be immediately rolled out to the NHS-linked organization’s 30 UK-based hospitals serving 300,000 patients a year in total.

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