The Future of Forecasting Heart Attacks - Artificial Intelligence

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Science is constantly marching forward, and contemporary tools and equipment mean that the march towards the future is speeding up all of the time. Luckily, several researchers and doctors are putting that forward thrust to good use when it comes to forecasting heart attack. Such scientists are working untiringly with the aim to determine ways to forecast heart attacks years prior to any warning signs come to pass. Early calculation means early intervention, and early intervention can save lives.

Artificial intelligence is making its way into health care, and one of its first stops is making sense of all of those scans that doctors order. By now, studies have shown that tools based on artificial intelligence, in a few scenarios, pick out unique developments that could be cancerous tumors better than doctors can, as digesting and synthesizing enormous volumes of information is what artificial intelligence does best.

For patients with suspected coronary artery disease, understanding plaque composition and quantitation is key. The specialists at Elucid have created a quantitative plaque analysis software, known as ElucidVivo. It has the capabilities to read scans and learn to detect signs of risk of plaque rupture and compromised flow of blood. The software can study routinely available CT angiograms, which are at occasionally referred to as CAT scans, and decode the image into a color-coded visualization and distinct numbers that would not otherwise be accessible during clinical care.

To understand how it works, it is essential to be familiar with what causes heart attacks and strokes. The most familiar reason for such events is a disease known as atherosclerosis, which leads to hardening and thickening of arterial walls as a result of a buildup of plaque. Plaque buildup is a result of several factors, including smoking, lack of exercise, constant worry, diet, and inborn or inherited.

The flow of blood can be limited as plaque builds along the artery wall. There are certain plaques that are known to have a higher probability of escaping from the artery wall (rupturing), which may result in clotting of blood and obstructing the artery on the whole. Blood can no longer flow due to this. When this takes place in the coronary artery for blood flowing towards the heart, it leads to heart attack, for the carotid artery to the brain it can lead to a stroke.

The software developed by Elucid - ElucidVivo- works by comparing the raw image to a ground reality established by specialist pathologists who studied live tissue under a microscope. This is even referred to as “validation in histopathology” and is exclusive to ElucidVivo. This information facilitates physicians to make much more informed decisions than could be carried out by evaluating the raw scan.

AI in radiology is turning out to be increasingly common in practice. And, the plaque quantification software being used by Elucid has taken this technology to the next level. It is a wonderful breakthrough to help forecast and prevent heart attacks!

Author: Peter Jenkins