Artificial intelligence technology that can accurately predict the risk of heart disease a decade in advance will soon be available to the NHS, UK media reported.
The technology could save thousands of lives every year.
AI and CT
Oxford University researchers have developed an artificial intelligence tool that can read ordinary CT scans.
Every year, 40,000 patients with chest pain receive CT scans. About three-quarters of patients who receive CT scans are told the results are normal because they show no signs of narrowing.
But about one in five of these patients will have a heart attack within the next decade.
Heart attacks, strokes and other related illnesses kill about 170,000 people a year in the UK.
The AI system analyzes what appears to be a normal scan for early warning signs of changes in the heart, including subtle changes in fat cells, scarring of tissue and the growth of tiny blood vessels, the report said.
Using algorithms that analyze such information, the ai system can predict a patient’s risk of a heart attack over the next nine years. Test results showed that the prediction was accurate 85 to 90 percent of the time.
Professor haralambos antoniades, who led the study, said: “what we see with CT is just the tip of the iceberg. We have developed an extremely powerful artificial intelligence system that can see… Below the surface, that’s an important part of the risk. People who are found to be at risk for heart disease can take drugs such as statins or aspirin.”