Ground-breaking artificial intelligence (AI) technology has been created in Lancashire and South Cumbria to report and read brain imaging scans to help stroke patients.
Known has Brainomix, the technology will help interpret Computerised Tomography (CT) or Computed Tomography Angiography (CTA) scans of acute ischaemic stroke patients.
Ischaemic strokes are the most common type of stroke which occur when a blood clot blocks the flow of blood and oxygen to the brain. These blood clots typically form in areas where the arteries have been narrowed or blocked over time by fatty deposits known as plaques.
Currently the management of stroke is time critical, and outcomes are best when treated at the earliest opportunity. This new technology will report on scans in a matter of minutes which otherwise would have been made by a clinician during their busy schedule.
Lancashire Teaching Hospitals are pleased to be the first acute Trust across the Lancashire and South Cumbria Integrated Care System (ICS) to be using the system with other local trusts set to go live soon.
Dr Siddhartha Wuppalapati, Consultant Interventional Neuroradiologist at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals, said: “The challenge was identifying patients who would benefit from either clot bursting drugs (IV thrombolysis) or fishing the clot out to restore the flow in the blood vessel (Mechanical Thrombectomy).
“The current pathway relies on identifying patients following a CT or CTA which needs to be interpreted urgently to commence the treatment.
“AI allows early identification of patients suitable for treatment within a few minutes of the scan being performed and so enables earlier treatment leading to better outcomes.”
The technology has been developed over 18 months by the Integrated Stroke Neurorehabilitation Delivery Network (ISNDN), a specialist task and finish group operating across the ICS.
Jean Sherrington, a stroke survivor who has been a patient representative for this project, added: “Speed is everything in Stroke and now AI will give clinicians the means to diagnose and treat patients faster.
“Not only will this improve patient outcome, it arms those treating stroke with the finest tools.
“This exciting development has only been achieved because a marvellous team have worked collaboratively and doggedly together, overcoming challenges, sharing knowledge and skill.”
A planned rollout of Brainomix will be in a phased approach across all acute Trusts locally, as per schedule below:
- Lancashire Teaching Hospitals - 30th June
- University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay (Furness): 9th - 12th July
- University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay (Lancaster): 13th - 14th July
- East Lancashire Hospitals: 13th - 16th July
- Blackpool Teaching Hospitals: 20th - 23rd July
More about this project will be shared soon via the Lancashire & South Cumbria ICS.