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Artificial Intelligence can help doctors diagnose heart defects in infants


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An earlier diagnosis will allow doctors to perform corrective surgery and take other actions to help newborns with heart defects.

Almost half of all deaths caused by congenital heart defects occur in children who are less than 1 year old. However, there may be a solution on the way to help these infants.

A new artificial intelligence (AI)-based technology may be able to diagnose heart problems more quickly and accurately than a medical professional to significantly improve the odds of survival.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), congenital heart defects are the most common type of birth defect.

Dr. Kolawole Oyelese, primatologist with Atlantic Maternal Fetal Medicine in New Jersey, told Healthline “While only about 1 percent of babies will be born with a congenital heart defect, almost 25 percent of those children will have a heart defect that requires surgery to correct it within the first year.”

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The CDC reports that from 1999 to 2006, there were almost 42,000 deaths related to congenital heart defects in the United States. This means the defects were either the main cause of death or contributed to death in some way.

Over the 7-year period tracked by the CDC, congenital heart defects were listed as the main cause of death for 27,960 people.

A 2010 study found that 48 percent of the deaths due to these defects occurred before a child had reached their first birthday.

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