Latest in Medicine

Image credit: UIG via Getty Images

AI outperforms human doctors in spotting skin cancer

The algorithm makes its easier and faster to get an early diagnosis.
764 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share
Save

Sponsored Links

UIG via Getty Images

In January last year scientists reported that artificial intelligence was almost as effective at identifying skin cancer as dermatologists. Now, less than 18 months later, it's even better. In an experiment between a deep learning convolutional neural network (or CNN) and 58 dermatologists, researchers found that human dermatologists accurately identified 86.6 percent of skin cancers from a range of images, compared to 95 percent for the CNN.

The study's first author, Holger Haenssle of the University of Heidelberg, said that the CNN missed fewer melanomas, "meaning it had higher sensitivity than the dermatologists". He added that it misdiagnosed fewer benign moles as malignant melanoma, which would ultimately result in less unnecessary surgery.

The AI was taught to distinguish dangerous skin lesions from benign ones after being shown more than 100,000 images. According to the team, the system will make early diagnosis of skin cancer faster and easier, helping doctors to intervene before the disease spreads. While the AI is still undergoing testing, and will likely be restricted to professional use initially, it's the sort of thing that could end up in the consumer market as a home diagnostic tool. Being able to check out suspicious skin conditions at home will allay fears and prevent unnecessary trips to the doctor's office, which would undoubtedly have a beneficial impact on healthcare systems globally.

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Comment
Comments
Share
764 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share
Save

Popular on Engadget

Engadget's 2019 Back-to-School Guide

Engadget's 2019 Back-to-School Guide

View
Terminator T-800 and The Joker are coming to 'Mortal Kombat 11'

Terminator T-800 and The Joker are coming to 'Mortal Kombat 11'

View
Microsoft contractors listened to what people told their Xbox consoles

Microsoft contractors listened to what people told their Xbox consoles

View
Tesla delays price hike for self-driving upgrade

Tesla delays price hike for self-driving upgrade

View
New wristband could predict aggressive outbursts in people with autism

New wristband could predict aggressive outbursts in people with autism

View

From around the web

Page 1Page 1ear iconeye iconFill 23text filevr