SAN DIEGO — Researchers with the University of California, San Diego's School of Medicine have debuted a new artificial intelligence algorithm that allows physicians to precisely measure heart function and detect heart disease from MRI images.
Enjoying life is something Jenylyn Carpio does not take for granted after she almost died in 2005. She was just 22-years-old when she suffered a sudden cardiac arrest a few months after giving birth to her daughter.
“The last thing I remember is waking up to my mom doing CPR on me and a police officer shining a light in my eyes,” she said.
Carpio was diagnosed with Long QT Syndrome and Complete Heart Block. She now lives with an implanted defibrillator and has had four defibrillator replacement surgeries over the years. As a Filipino American, she hopes her story encourages people of all ethnicities, backgrounds and ages to prioritize their heart health, while bringing awareness to sudden cardiac arrest and to the importance of CPR. She is also an active volunteer for the American Heart Association and served as their Go Red for Women ambassador of 2022.
“Just having to adjust to knowing that there’s going to be a device inside of me for the rest of my life, while I was still learning how to take care of a newborn baby and having to take care of myself, it was a lot of process,” she said.
Professor Albert Hsiao is a researcher at the UC San Diego’s School of Medicine. They debuted a new artificial intelligence algorithm that allows physicians to measure heart function and detect heart disease from MRI images, which could help precisely diagnose future patients like Carpio.
“Much more efficiently, much more reliably and automate a lot of the analysis of it,” Hsiao said.
He said the AI algorithm is more likely to find abnormalities and the AI algorithm is showing great promise in highlighting heart problems. Hsiao said that by combining MRI images with the AI algorithm, it’s possible to get a more precise diagnosis and create a better treatment plan. He hopes to keep developing AI technologies and believes the future of medicine could look very different in the future.
“AI is giving us a chance to tie all of these disciplines together, but because AI is so facile, it’s things that we can use to bring in knowledge from different disciplines together,” he said. “I think it’s going to make it really possible to make a big difference in the lives of many patients.”
Carpio is glad to see continued research on heart health and hopes to inspire others to take care of their hearts.
“Heart disease knows no boundaries. I did not know at the time that it would happen to me,” she said. “Medical professionals and researchers can see that we want this research, we want treatments, just innovation and progress.”
Carpio encourages everyone to get their CPR certification, whether you have a history of heart problems or not.