Singaporean scientists develop AI system for screening glaucoma

A novel AI-based methodology of screening sufferers for glaucoma has been developed by scientists on the Nanyang Technological College and clinicians from the Tan Tock Seng Hospital in Singapore.


The automated glaucoma screening methodology was developed in a examine, whose findings had been revealed within the peer-reviewed journal Strategies. 

Two stereo fundus photographs taken as a pair had been collected from every participant affected person at TTSH. These photographs had been then mixed to type a 3D picture. In complete, 282 fundus photographs had been examined, together with 70 glaucoma instances and 212 wholesome instances. 

A set of algorithms, consisting of a deep convolutional neural community and an attention-guided community, was used to analyse and differentiate these photographs with glaucoma from these with out.

The examine has proven that the AI methodology attained 97% accuracy and 95% sensitivity in diagnosing glaucoma. When a single fundus picture from every participant was used, the tactic had a decrease sensitivity of 85-85%. 


Glaucoma is a bunch of eye ailments that trigger harm to the optic nerve, resulting in imaginative and prescient loss and blindness. It’s also known as the “silent thief of sight” as it’s often asymptomatic till later levels. In accordance with a examine revealed within the American Academy of Ophthalmology, the illness is projected to have an effect on 111.8 million folks world wide by 2040 from 76 million instances final yr. 

NTU mentioned in a press assertion that their newest analysis methodology developed with TTSH might be probably utilized in much less developed areas the place sufferers lack entry to eye docs.

Presently, the analysis group is testing the algorithms on a bigger dataset from sufferers at TTSH. They’re additionally seeking to put the algorithms in a cell phone app for use as a screening software within the subject. 


Aiming to display screen for eye ailments in underserved areas, Samsung has turned older fashions of its Galaxy smartphone line into fundus cameras underneath its Galaxy Upcycling programme. The refurbished gadgets use AI to analyse and diagnose photographs for ophthalmic ailments. These hook up with an app that gathers the pictures and robotically suggests a remedy routine. The corporate developed the fundus digicam along with the Worldwide Company for the Prevention of Blindness and the Yonsei College Well being System in South Korea.

Final month, Johnson & Johnson Imaginative and prescient, the attention well being unit of Johnson & Johnson Medical Units Corporations, introduced its three-year roadmap to develop an built-in eye well being ecosystem in Singapore that focuses on knowledge and digitalisation initiatives. 

The ecosystem goals to lift the capability of eye care professionals in offering companies; increase Singaporeans’ entry to eye care; and improve data about eye well being and imaginative and prescient wants by way of hyper-personalisation of affected person care. The corporate mentioned key initiatives to be carried out embody a group eye well being e-referral community, an AI-powered eye care service and telehealth. 


“Many glaucoma sufferers stay undiagnosed locally, and in creating nations like India, the proportion of undiagnosed instances could also be effectively over 90%. Whereas instances are often picked up throughout routine eye checks, population-based screening is difficult as a result of specialised and costly gear or skilled specialists required. The method of manually inspecting particular person retinal photographs can be time-consuming and is determined by subjective analysis by specialists. Our methodology of utilizing AI, in distinction, may probably be extra environment friendly and economical,” mentioned Dr Leonard Yip, co-author of the examine and head of Glaucoma Service on the TTSH’s Nationwide Healthcare Group-Eye Institute. 

“By a mix of machine studying strategies, our group has developed a screening mannequin that may diagnose glaucoma from fundus photographs, eradicating the necessity for ophthalmologists to take varied medical measurements (reminiscent of inner eye stress) for analysis. The benefit of use of our sturdy automated glaucoma analysis strategy implies that any healthcare practitioner may make use of the system to assist in glaucoma screening. This might be particularly useful in geographical areas with much less entry to ophthalmologists,” Wang Lipo, lead writer of the examine and an affiliate professor on the NTU College of Electrical and Digital Engineering, additionally commented.

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