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Researchers Develop AI Algorithm That Can Diagnose Skin Diseases

The researchers caution that AI cannot definitively interpret images, that it is not trained to interpret even when the problem presented is straightforward

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Recently, there have been remarkable advances in the use of AI in medicine. Pixabay

Researchers have developed a deep learning-based artificial intelligence (AI) algorithm that can accurately classify cutaneous skin disorders, predict malignancy, suggest primary treatment options, and serve as an ancillary tool to enhance the diagnostic accuracy of clinicians. With the assistance of this system, the diagnostic accuracy of dermatologists, as well as the general public, was significantly improved, said the study, published in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology.

Skin diseases are common, but it is not always easy to visit a dermatologist quickly or distinguish malignant from benign conditions. “Recently, there have been remarkable advances in the use of AI in medicine. For specific problems, such as distinguishing between melanoma and nevi, AI has shown results comparable to those of human dermatologists,” said lead investigator Jung-Im Na from Seoul National University in South Korea. Most prior studies have been limited to specific binary tasks, such as differentiating melanoma from nevi.

“Our results suggest that our algorithm may serve as an Augmented Intelligence that can empower medical professionals in diagnostic dermatology,” Na added.

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Using a “convolutional neural network,” a specialised AI algorithm, the research team developed an AI system capable of predicting malignancy, suggesting treatment options, and classifying skin disorders. They collected 220,000 images of Asians and Caucasians with 174 skin diseases and trained neural networks to interpret those images.

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Researchers have developed a deep learning-based artificial intelligence (AI) algorithm that can accurately classify cutaneous skin disorders. Pixabay

They found that the algorithm could diagnose 134 skin disorders and suggest primary treatment options, render multi-class classification among disorders, and enhance the performance of medical professionals through Augmented Intelligence.”Rather than AI replacing humans, we expect AI to support humans as Augmented Intelligence to reach diagnoses faster and more accurately,” Na said.

The researchers caution that AI cannot definitively interpret images, that it is not trained to interpret even when the problem presented is straightforward. For example, an algorithm trained only to differentiate between melanoma and nevi cannot differentiate between an image of a nail hematoma and either a melanoma or a nevus. If the shape of the hematoma is irregular, the algorithm may diagnose it as melanoma.

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They also pointed out that the algorithm was trained and tested using high-quality images and its performance is generally suboptimal if the input images are of low quality. “We anticipate that the use of our algorithm with a smartphone could encourage the public to visit specialists for cancerous lesions such as melanoma that might have been neglected otherwise, however, there are issues with the quality or composition of photographs taken by the general public that may affect the results of the algorithm, Na said. (IANS)

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Avoid Eczema Flare Up In Summer With These Simple Tips

Eczema flare-up can be kept under control this summer with these simple tips

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Eczema
Eczema can be kept under control this summer. Pixabay

Eczema is a medical condition that causes the skin to become inflamed and irritated. It causes an itchy feeling on the surface of the skin, followed by a rash. The area appears dry and scaly, the skin turns reddish.

Staying indoors during the summer is helpful for Eczema patients as heat and sweat trigger the problem. But it is also important to maintain hygiene and prevent outbreaks even while being indoors.

A sudden Eczema flare-up could be a difficult situation to deal with especially when access to doctors is limited and visiting clinics is not recommended unless absolutely required.

Dr. Kiran Godse, Consultant Dermatologist, Hiranandani Hospital Vashi, shares a few tips to avoid Eczema flare-up in summer.

Drink plenty of fluids

Drinking water frequently is recommended for good skin and health. Water flushes out the toxins from the body, which can otherwise upset or irritate delicate skin. It’s important to drink plenty of water to not only stay hydrated but also avoid skin outbreaks.

Eczema
Eczema is not going to hinder your flawless skin with these tips. Pixabay

Keep your skin moisturized

Dry skin is the most common trigger for Eczema flares. Make sure you follow a daily moisturizing routine. Choose products that are fragrance-free and dye-free, more greasy than creamy. The best way to lock the moisture in the skin is applying a thick layer of moisturizer within a few minutes of taking shower. Apply at night before sleeping as well.

Wear loose, breathable clothes

With the summer setting in, it is preferable to wear loose clothing regardless of an Eczema flare. Tight clothes irritate the skin by sticking to the surface and increasing the body temperature, making you prone to a flare-up. Wear breathable fabrics, pay attention to the colour of your apparel. Dark colours attract more heat while synthetic fabric causes skin irritation, making your skin extra sensitive and triggering an Eczema flare.

Do not scratch

Scratching your skin makes the problem will worsen as it breaks the top layer of the skin, causing bacterial infections and worsening the Eczema. Opt for a cool compress to be placed on the area to minimize the itchiness and provide relief from aggravation.

Keep the skin clean

While most of us maintain basic hygiene practices, it becomes even more important in warmer months when your body sweats the most. Taking a bath daily helps clear the bacteria from the skin. It also washes away the accumulated sweat and dust on the surface of the skin. Wash the body and infected area with a mild soap with no fragrances, harsh chemicals, or dyes. Also, make sure to change your clothes twice daily.

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Follow the prescribed treatment: Eczema has no permanent cure, but it can be treated through proactive measures and following the treatment prescribed by your dermatologist. As prescribed by your doctor, creams and ointments may be used to ease the itchiness when experiencing a flare-up. (IANS)

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Huawei, China Mobile Jointly Take 5G Connectivity To Mount Everest

According to Huawei, it has offered end-to-end solutions in the construction of China Mobile's Everest dual Gigabit network

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At the attitude of 5,300 meters, the 5G download speed exceeded 1.66 Gbps, where the upload speed tops 215 Mbps. Wikimedia Commons

Huawei and China Mobile on Friday announced they have jointly taken 5G connectivity to a new height by bringing the network on the summit of Mount Everest, after the completion of the worlds highest 5G base station at an altitude of 6500 metres.

With the launch of the Gigabit optical fibre network at the attitude of 6,500 meters, Huawei has enableed China Mobile to run its dual Gigabit network on Mount Everest.

On the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the first successful arrival at Mount Everest from the northern slope, the 5G network on Mount Everest will provide communication services for the 2020 Mount Everest re-measurement.

Huawei
Huawei and China Mobile on Friday announced they have jointly taken 5G connectivity to a new height by bringing the network on the summit of Mount Everest. Wikimedia Commons

According to Huawei, it has offered end-to-end solutions in the construction of China Mobile’s Everest dual Gigabit network, where base stations were built in Mount Everest Base Camp at the attitude of 5,300 metres, the Transition Camp at 5,800 metres, and the Forward Camp at 6,500 metres.

At the attitude of 5,300 meters, the 5G download speed exceeded 1.66 Gbps, where the upload speed tops 215 Mbps.

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Meanwhile, with its HoloSens intelligent video surveillance system, Huawei ensures streaming quality with the capabilities of optimisation and fault locating with just one click, keeping the networks always on even at the attitude of 6,500 meters at the summit of Everest, said the company. (IANS)

 

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Coronavirus Vaccine May Take 9 Months To Develop, Says Bill Gates

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is funding several efforts to find a solution to the COVID-19 pandemic

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Bill Gates
While vaccine development usually takes around five years, Gates believes that scientists may come up with a coronavirus vaccine within 9 months to two years time. Wikimedia Commons

While it appears that only a COVID-19 vaccine may take us back to normal, its development may take at least nine months to two years, billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates has said.

Even though several drugs are also being tested to treat COVID-19, Gates believes the perfect drug that might help the world go back to the way things were in December before the coronavirus pandemic is far from sight.

“Most of the drug candidates right now are nowhere near that powerful. They could save a lot of lives, but they aren’t enough to get us back to normal,” the Microsoft co-founder wrote in his GatesNotes blog on Thursday.

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In the absence of an “almost perfect drug to treat COVID-19”, it becomes imperative that every person on the planet gets vaccinated against coronavirus. “Realistically, if we’re going to return to normal, we need to develop a safe, effective vaccine. We need to make billions of doses, we need to get them out to every part of the world, and we need all of this to happen as quickly as possible,” he said.

While vaccine development usually takes around five years, Gates believes that scientists may come up with a coronavirus vaccine within 9 months to two years time. “As of April 9, there are 115 different COVID-19 vaccine candidates in the development pipeline. I think that eight to ten of those look particularly promising,” said Gates.

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is funding several efforts to find a solution to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Microsoft co-founder explained that safety and efficacy are the two most important goals for every vaccine.

Coronavirus
While it appears that only a COVID-19 vaccine may take us back to normal, its development may take at least nine months to two years, billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates has said. Pixabay

Some minor side effects, like a mild fever or injection site pain, are generally acceptable, and all vaccines do not have 100 per cent efficacy. “For example, this year’s flu vaccine is around 45 percent effective,” he said.

“I suspect a vaccine that is at least 70 per cent effective will be enough to stop the (COVID-19) outbreak. A 60 per cent effective vaccine is useable, but we might still see some localised outbreaks. Anything under 60 per cent is unlikely to create enough herd immunity to stop the virus,” Gates noted.

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To stop the pandemic, the world will need to manufacture and distribute at least 7 billion doses (or possibly 14 billion, if it’s a multi-dose vaccine) of the vaccine, he added. (IANS)