Artificial intelligence and machine learning in gastroenterology



SAN FRANCISCO – Artificial intelligence (AI) is using computer technology to solve particular kinds of medical problems, Sushovan Guha, MD, PhD, AGAF, chair, division of gastroenterology, University of Arizona, Phoenix, said in an interview at the AGA Tech Summit, sponsored by the AGA Center for GI Innovation and Technology.

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Computers are good at doing many processes in a short period of time and executing repetitive tasks with no errors, whereas humans tend to introduce errors after many repetitions. Using algorithms by which physicians assess and diagnose colonic lesions, computer software can learn the criteria that diagnose adenomas and assist in the process of diagnosis, Dr. Guha said.

Computers are also ideal for managing and analyzing large amounts of data – this ability has so far been used to personalize cancer treatment – and is now being used to suggest the best treatment and predict remission in patients with inflammatory bowel disease. AI can use anatomical data combined with endoscopy to predict GI bleeding so that physicians can target therapy. Dr. Guha predicts that there will be an “explosion” of applications of AI in gastroenterology in the next 5-10 years.

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