AI is becoming a common feature in our everyday lives and researchers are exploiting what AI has to offer in order to improve lives, particularly in the health sector. In some cases, AI has proven to be much more accurate than doctors are.
Now, researchers at Oxford University are using machine-learning tools to work out the health status of arteries in the body. They have also come up with biomarkers that will help in predicting whether a heart attack is imminent. This will help prevent cardiac arrest before it happens.
The researchers also claim the new technology is able to predict five years into the future with a lot of accuracy. Usually, when a person experiences chest pain, the next step is to conduct a CCTA of the arteries. If no substantial narrowing is found, the patient will be allowed to go home. The problem is that even those with little narrowing can get a heart attack too.
Just because a scan of the arteries does not show narrowing is not enough proof that the person is in the clear as far as heart attacks are concerned notes Charalambos Antoniades, a professor of cardiovascular health at Oxford University. Therefore, a CCTA scan is not enough, and this is why AI will come in handy.
The new biomarker tech is known as Fat Radiomic Profile (FRP). The system was coded with the help of machine learning. The algorithm detects red flags in the body’s perivascular lining of the blood vessels. Signs of scarring, inflammation or any visible change in the structure of blood vessels is an indication of a possible heart attack in the future.
The professor and other researchers used biopsies extracted from patients who were undergoing cardiac surgical procedures.
The team hopes that their study will create awareness and revolutionize cardiac health. They plan to roll out this technology in the healthcare system in the U.K so that it can be used together with CCTA.