One image of the lungs is enough for a neural network to predict heart problems

A team of researchers led by the Cardiovascular Imaging Research Center

of Diseases in Massachusetts trained a neural network to estimate the risk of dying from a heart attack or stroke over the next 10 years. One chest x-ray is sufficient for analysis.

Atherosclerotic risk assessmentcardiovascular diseases is carried out for the appointment of preventive statins. Traditionally, this has been done using a statistical model that takes into account many variables, including age, gender, race, systolic blood pressure, hypertension treatment, smoking, type 2 diabetes, and blood tests.

In order to improve the efficiency of forecasting and,accordingly, prescribing preventive treatment only to those who really need it, the researchers trained the neural network. They used data from 147,497 chest x-rays from 40,643 participants in a multicenter, randomized screening trial for prostate, lung, colon, and ovarian cancer.

The researchers tested the model using a secondan independent cohort of 11,430 outpatients who underwent routine ambulatory chest radiography and were potentially eligible for statin therapy. Of these patients, 1,096 had had cardiovascular disease within 10 years of the radiograph, and the rest had no such problems.

The results of the study showed that the levelThe risk predicted by the neural network is significantly correlated with the actual data on the disease: in those patients who encountered problems, the calculated risk level was significantly higher.

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