About 10 to 30 percent of people who contract COVID do not fully recover for several months or even years. They are instead experiencing a phenomenon known as Long COVID, a constellation of new or ongoing health problems that can affect large parts of the body, from the brain to the reproductive organs. Worryingly, it can even cause hidden damage to organs like the lungs tip See, because diagnostic tools aren’t powerful enough to see the finer details of the virus attack.
This has made monitoring the lung health of a post-COVID patient difficult for clinicians – but that could soon change with the help of artificial intelligence. In an article published in the magazine on Monday Nature Machine IntelligenceResearchers in Saudi Arabia have developed Deep-Lung Parenchyma Enhancing (DLPE), an AI tool that can reveal abnormalities buried deep within a chest CT scan.
The AI works by analyzing an image of a patient’s lung parenchyma – the tissues often most affected by COVID and involved in processing oxygen and carbon dioxide. DLPE seeks out and improves the appearance of abnormalities like lung lesions that don’t look like they should belong. The tool could detect lesions caused by pulmonary fibrosis (scarring of the lungs during COVID-19 infection) that were not visible with traditional radiology.
“With DLPE, we demonstrated for the first time that long-term CT lesions can explain such symptoms,” said Xin Gao, a computational biologist at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology and the paper’s lead researcher, in a press release. “Hence, fibrosis treatments can be very effective in addressing the long-term respiratory complications of COVID-19.”
The researchers believe their AI will help uncover hidden damage in the lungs and point to a clearer diagnosis behind long-term COVID symptoms, such as shortness of breath or a persistent cough. It could even be a helpful diagnostic tool to uncover unseen lung abnormalities or dysfunctions in people suffering from other respiratory conditions such as pneumonia, tuberculosis or lung cancer.
https://www.thedailybeast.com/treating-long-covid-may-get-a-lot-easier-with-this-new-ai-tool?source=articles&via=rss Treating Long COVID can become much easier with this new AI tool