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AI supported Mammography, a world of advancement

  • AI's influence spans all sectors, including medicine, with companies like Vicarious and Tempus pioneering AI-assisted medical approaches.
  • The Lancet Oncology's recent study reveals promising AI-enhanced mammography accuracy and workload reduction, marked by a groundbreaking 20% increase in cancer detection among 80,000 Swedish women.
  • This milestone not only highlights AI's healthcare potential but also foretells a future of harmonious human-technology collaboration against challenges like breast cancer.

We all know that the world will soon be accompanied by AI, no matter what field you’re interested in. Even in medical fields, AI has started to make a pretty good place for itself in the industry. There are a few companies like Vicarious, Tempus and etc., that are working on the production of medical methods supported by AI. 

Likewise, the recent study and research paper provided by The Lancet Oncology, states - “Studies have shown promising results using artificial intelligence (AI) to improve mammography screening accuracy and reduce screen-reading workload; however, to our knowledge, a randomized trial has not yet been conducted. We aimed to assess the clinical safety of an AI-supported screen-reading protocol compared with standard screen reading by radiologists following mammography.”

Yes, that's the new headline on all medicinal tech news of pages. 

So what is the progress of it?

This interim safety investigation involving a cohort of more than 80,000 Swedish women has revealed a considerable advancement in the field of medical diagnostics, which is a ground-breaking revelation. The use of AI-backed screening techniques has triumphed, surpassing the traditional method of mammography assessment performed by two breast radiologists.

Interestingly, the data shows that compared to the traditional protocol of dual mammogram examination by skilled radiologists, AI-assisted screening has demonstrated a stunning 20% increase in the detection of cancer cases.

Importantly, this development was made without the unfavorable increase in false positives, and at the same time, the demanding workload connected with screen interpretation was dramatically reduced.

This significant achievement not only highlights how AI has the ability to revolutionize healthcare but also ushers in a time when technology and human skill will seamlessly combine to take on a terrible foe like breast cancer. 

“The greatest potential of AI right now is that it could allow radiologists to be less burdened by the excessive amount of reading.” - Kristina Lang
“While our AI-supported screening system requires at least one radiologist in charge of detection, it could potentially do away with the need for double reading of the majority of mammograms easing the pressure on workloads and enabling radiologists to focus on more advanced diagnostics while shortening waiting times for patients.” - Kristina Lang

Regulations that countries follow

Europe has created regulations requiring the participation of two radiologists in the mammography screening procedure. Contrarily, the US lacks a standardized methodology, which can result in variances in task management between nations.

The lack of qualified radiologists, however, is a problem that is shared by the healthcare systems in both Europe and the United States and has been highlighted by data from the Radiological Society of North America. Radiologists' roles become even more important as medical imaging becomes more and more essential, reinforcing their status as important pillars within the larger healthcare system. 

Although there are many more attempts at better technology in medicine through AI, a doctor would never turn down a stethoscope. 

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Edited by Shruti Thapa