Meeting the unmet needs of clinicians from AI systems showcased for cardiology with deep-learning-based ECG analysis
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A . 2021 Jun 15;118(24):e2020620118. doi: 10.1073/pnas.2020620118.
Yonatan Elul, Aviv A Rosenberg, Assaf Schuster, Alex M Bronstein, Yael Yaniv
Despite their great promise, artificial intelligence (AI) systems have yet to become ubiquitous in the daily practice of medicine largely due to several crucial unmet needs of healthcare practitioners. These include lack of explanations in clinically meaningful terms, handling the presence of unknown medical conditions, and transparency regarding the system's limitations, both in terms of statistical performance as well as recognizing situations for which the system's predictions are irrelevant. We articulate these unmet clinical needs as machine-learning (ML) problems and systematically address them with cutting-edge ML techniques. We focus on electrocardiogram (ECG) analysis as an example domain in which AI has great potential and tackle two challenging tasks: the detection of a heterogeneous mix of known and unknown arrhythmias from ECG and the identification of underlying cardio-pathology from segments annotated as normal sinus rhythm recorded in patients with an intermittent arrhythmia. We validate our methods by simulating a screening for arrhythmias in a large-scale population while adhering to statistical significance requirements. Specifically, our system 1) visualizes the relative importance of each part of an ECG segment for the final model decision; 2) upholds specified statistical constraints on its out-of-sample performance and provides uncertainty estimation for its predictions; 3) handles inputs containing unknown rhythm types; and 4) handles data from unseen patients while also flagging cases in which the model's outputs are not usable for a specific patient. This work represents a significant step toward overcoming the limitations currently impeding the integration of AI into clinical practice in cardiology and medicine in general.
Read Full Article Here: https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2020620118