The eyes are not just only the window to our soul but also to our heart now – at least for the newly-developed artificial intelligence system created by the popular technology firm, Google.
The researchers from the California-based company along with Verily Life Science created a robot machine with AI software that scans the patient’s retina to predict the risks of heart disease by identifying the blood pressure, age, and if he or she is engaged in smoking activities.
Expanding the Purpose
Retina Scanning is popularly known for its identification and authentication uses. It is a type of biometrics technology that is widely used across various industries especially in big companies that employs hundreds of employees.
The United States highly-respected investigation bodies such as the FBI and NASA made used of this technology for its ability to quickly verify the identity of their subjects.
Retina scanning was first introduced by Dr. Carleton Simon in the mid-1930’s and with the advancement of technology, its design and functions were further developed and was later used in other major fields such as the movie and business industry.
With its efficiency in verifying identities, the method is strictly implemented in prison because of the difficulty to hack and spoof the system. In just few seconds, it can perform its functions effectively.
Now that Google has come up with another use of retina scanning, it has clearly expands and adds new role in the medical field.
Just As How Accurate
The use of retinal images was not a new story for the medical field. In the past years, the technology has been instrumental in detecting various diseases such as cancer, diabetes, and other blood illnesses.
But since the eyes normally give doctors the idea about the health of a certain person, Google aims to predict heart diseases and stroke with the help of algorithm. One of their top researcher confirmed that their newly-built technology is accurate and precise for an average of 70%.
Basing on the data from more than 280 000 patients, the device was able to detect factors of heart disease such as blood pressure, age, gender, and smoking activities. They compared the retinal image of a person who has suffered cardiovascular attack and another person who has not and later achieved results of 70% correct scans. The results were surprisingly the same like those who underwent blood testing.
The new invention from Google marked a fresh breakthrough in science as heart disease remained as number one killer disease in the world. And now with a device that can give patients early warning, relevant response can be done by people.
Though it was hailed as an additional feature in the medical field, experts feel that the recent discovery is still a work in progress. Dr. Michael McConnell from Verily has admitted that they should work more to further improve and verify these findings before it can be applied and used in an actual test.