Taiwan AI, health, comms experts create dementia detection app

Taiwan AI, health, comms experts create dementia detection app

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwanese psychiatric and artificial intelligence (AI) researchers have collaborated to create an app that helps detect the early signs of dementia, according to CNA.

The app uses AI technology and machine learning to detect mild cognitive impairment, and important early warning signs indicating possible dementia onset. Taiwan’s rapidly aging population means demand for healthcare and cost-effective diagnostic devices is growing fast.

The app was spearheaded by Yuan Ze University’s Department of Electrical Engineering and AI Research Center Professor Chao Yao-keng (趙燿庚), in collaboration with U.S. firm Qualcomm’s Taiwan R&D Program, and psychiatrists at Far Eastern Memorial Hospital in New Taipei.

Zhao said that the deterioration of the brain caused by dementia is irreversible, the cost of care is high, and current testing methods often overlook early onset symptoms. He said that the app is cheap, fast, and simple to use, and that these features make it important for identifying the disease early and reducing the damage it causes.

The research team used over 1,500 input video clips to train the AI model, with each video ranging from five to 30 minutes. Zhao said that the process of training the model to capture indicators of dementia onset (e.g. facial features, eye, and lip movement) is very resource intensive, and that this was one of the main difficulties encountered when developing the app.

Despite this, Zhao said that the app had an accuracy of 80%. In the future it is planned that the app will be developed for automatic detection, or as an auxiliary tool for self-diagnosis before medical professionals are involved.

Researchers say that mild cognitive impairment is considered a transitional stage between a healthy brain and a state of dementia, such as Alzheimer’s Disease. About 50% of mild cognitive impairment sufferers will deteriorate to a state of dementia within five years, according to research.

Business and Company
News Type
  • 良值教育
  • 產業創新和基礎設施

By Jono Thomson, Taiwan News, Staff Writer

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