Doctors have a new tool to use when diagnosing breast cancer. It is called Google Health, and of course comes from Google. The tool uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) to recognise anything abnormal in breast tissue. Researchers trained the AI program to detect abnormalities. It read a huge number of results from X-rays over the past few years. X-rays are currently what doctors use to detect breast cancer. The Google Health program will help doctors in reading these X-rays more accurately. The current system is that two doctors agree on whether or not an X-ray shows cancer. If they cannot agree, they ask a third doctor. Google Health will make this diagnosis quicker.
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Researchers from Google Health worked with experts from Imperial College London to design the AI program. They trained the program by inputting X-rays from more than 76,000 women in the U.K. and more than 15,000 in the USA into its software. The software then produced an algorithm. In hospital tests, the algorithm did better at reading X-rays than six doctors. Google Health spokesperson Dominic King said: "Our team is really proud of these research findings, which suggest that we are on our way to developing a tool that can help doctors spot breast cancer with greater accuracy." The World Cancer Research Fund said over two million new cases of breast cancer were reported in 2019.