At the UEG (United European Gastroenterology) Week event in Barcelona, Spain, the first automatic polyp assistance system was unveiled by Medtronic.
The GI Genius intelligent endoscopy system monitors the live video feed from a colonoscope, outlining in real time potential signs of polyps. It certainly doesn’t diagnose anything, but serves, in Medtronic’s terms, as “an ever vigilant second observer”.
The software inside uses artificial intelligence algorithm techniques to spot abnormal tissue patterns that may be indicative of cancer or other diseases.
Medtronic reports that the GI Genius is now cleared in Europe, with availability in certain countries, while there’s no word on when it may be cleared for use in the United States.
“One of the key factors to maximizing the prevention of colorectal cancer is the integration of advanced technologies like artificial intelligence into daily practice,” said Prof. Alessandro Repici, head of gastroenterology at Humanitas Hospital in Rozzano (Milan), in a Medtronic announcement. “The use of artificial intelligence in gastroenterology ushers in a new era of diagnostic endoscopy that can improve the quality of colonoscopies. In my experience, the GI Genius module can be extremely precise in identifying lesions in the colonic mucosa that can be difficult to detect and may have been missed. This change in daily practice has the potential to improve diagnosis and overall outcomes for patients that may have colorectal cancer.”
Here’s a video that demonstrates the technology in action: