Monday, April 13, 2015

Increasing the power of image-based clinical trials using the cloud

Yes, there are a great number of medical image quantification methods out there, and improvements to the methods or new ones are published every month. Most of them never reach the clinic, and are never used by anyone other than the authors of the study reported in the paper. The medical image analysis community has been reinventing the wheel for a long time.

One of the reasons is the lack of availability of the methods. Most of the are never turned into a software platform that a clinician can use, and even those that are available, are too expensive or too specific for a clinical center to buy. Only centres acquiring a large number of certain studies find it worth to acquire a software platform. Thanks to Medimsight, this can completely change, as the developer of the method can simply upload his method to our platform, and the next day it is available for any clinician in the world with a simple user interface and a powerful visualization environment.

Another classical problem in medical imaging is the evaluation of the methods. Most methods, when first published, are tested only on a small sample of images. A classical sentence in the discussion section of these papers is ‘Further evaluation with a larger dataset is warranted in order to evaluate the clinical application of our method’. On of the reasons for this is the limited amount of subjects with a certain pathology that are scanned in a clinical center, specially if the pathology is not very prevalent. Interestingly, cloud systems such as Medimsight are a direct solution to this problem. When two independent clinicians upload a their image datasets to quantify them through one of the methods available in Medimsight, they could choose to notify the system about the description of their study. The platform can detect studies about the same pathology, or using the same analysis method, and could offer the clinician/researcher to participate in a meta-study with a much large of images. Simply, with the increasing use of Medimsight, studies of a method with a large cohort of multi-centric data will happen naturally. In the classical software platform based model, these would never happen.

This is great way to test a method, which is why developers are turning to Medimsight.

It is also a great way to compare data quality and quantification results among clinical centres. Which is why clinicians and researchers are turning to Medimsight.

1 comment:

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