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AI drives first ejection fraction cardiac software tool for mobile ultrasound

por John W. Mitchell, Senior Correspondent | September 25, 2018
DiA Imaging Analysis and GE Healthcare have teamed up to offer an ejection fraction (EF) artificial intelligence (AI) app to help emergency room, intensive care and anesthesia providers make better clinical decisions for their patients.

“When every second counts, automated tools mean precious time saved,” Hila Goldman-Asian, CEO and co-founder DiA Imaging Analysis told HCB News. “DiA’s LVivo EF can enhance ultrasound performance using automated machine guidance. It is easy to use and can improve patient care by reducing medical errors in decision-making, making treatment more efficient, and decreasing procedure times.”

The AI EF platform is now an available with GE’s Vscan Extend handheld, pocket-sized ultrasound. It runs on low memory and processing power, making it ideal for portable applications.

EF evaluation is a critical diagnostic protocol in point-of-care settings, according to Goldman-Asian. For example, she related an actual emergency room case of a patient who presented with chest pain and swollen legs. These presenting symptoms can be attributed to several conditions, including a blood clot, a kidney problem or a cardiac issue. With imaging valuation via the EF app, the patient was diagnosed with a heart attack. With such decision support, the patient was diagnosed much faster and without unnecessary diagnostic tests.

Specifically, DiA’s LVivo EF platform evaluates the heart’s left ventricular function. The platform, which is FDA-cleared, relies on AI-powered and image-processing technology combining advance pattern recognition and machine-learning algorithms to automatically imitate the way the human eye identifies borders and motion. The software produces data and scoring information to help physicians make decisions.

“The LVivo EF app takes the subjectivity out of the ultrasound evaluation, so that emergency and critical care providers can use this automated tool to support their decisions with quick, accurate and objective data to evaluate heart function,” said Goldman-Asian.

Today, most ultrasound cardiac evaluations in point-of-care settings are done by visual estimation or “eyeballing," she added. Such methods are subjective, time-consuming and highly dependent on the experience of the physician in making these types of specific evaluations. DiA’s LVivo EF is a vendor-neutral, fully automated clinical decision support solution. Goldman-Asian stressed that such AI applications extend the reach of radiologists.

“AI will never replace radiologists because they do a lot more than just interpreting images,” she said. “In fact, AI will empower radiologists to do more meaningful work that calls upon their experience, training and skill set.”

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