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Rafael López González

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New Chest X-Ray Classification Tool

Despite the technological evolution of imaging modalities like CT, US and MRI, conventional X-ray remains the most performed examination in radiology departments, and remains a fundamental tool for anatomical analysis in the detection and diagnosis of respiratory diseases and bone tissue alterations. However, radiology departments have limitations in reporting the X-Rays due to the limited resources available (link).

QUIBIM has developed a Chest X-Ray Classification Tool that offers a solution to this problem which can help radiology departments become even more efficient. This classifier developed in collaboration with Hospital Universitario y Politécnico La Fe, estimates the probability of chest X-Rays of having a pathology using Artificial Intelligence.

How does it work?

This tool makes use of fourteen Convolutional Neural Networks trained with a database of more than 100,000 images (NIH ChestXray14 dataset) to estimate the probability of presence of the following pathologies in chest X-Rays: atelectasis, cardiomegaly, effusion, infiltration, mass, nodule, pneumonia, pneumothorax, consolidation, edema, emphysema, fibrosis, pleural thickening and hernia. Afterwards, the probabilities are used by a Fully Connected Neural Network to get the final probability of the X-Ray of being abnormal.

XRAY chest

Because of this AI methodology the classifier understands the visual patterns that are most indicative of the different pathologies using the knowledge extracted from the large dataset of radiographs used to train the networks. QUIBIM’s Chest X-Ray Classification Tool is able to learn further using new images, which means that this system is continually improving and evolving with time.

 What information does it provide?

Once all the quantifications are performed this tool provides an intuitive Structured Report with the patient’s information, the abnormal probability of the radiographs analyzed and the representation of the findings. In addition, if the image is classified as abnormal, the report shows the three pathologies that are more likely to be found and a heatmap that highlights the most abnormal regions. This report is designed to be very user friendly, to assist the user in understanding the tool’s findings at a glance in order to make its usage highly efficient.

Why is this new tool so useful?

Using this technology it is possible to prioritize unreported, potentially pathological radiographs which allows radiologists to focus their efforts on studies that are more likely to have pathologies and thereby become more efficient. This tool essentially ensures that pathological findings, which could have been unreported due to the heavy workload of radiology departments, are correctly reported.

QUIBIM’s goal is to provide the radiology departments with an optimal solution for automatic reading of X-Rays without interfering in the  workflow of the department.

QUIBIM’S Chest X-Ray Analysis Tool is already available at QUIBIM Precision® Depending on the needs of the department, this tool is accessible through the cloud with just a few clicks  or  it can be fully integrated in the radiology department’s workflow as a local solution for  seamless interpretation of  chest X-Rays.

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