Key Using ultrasound AI to prevent cardiovascular diseases through early detection of atherosclerosis.
Using AI to maximize the potential of POCUS for disease prevention
Qure.ai has developed an AI product for vascular health called qVH. It is the first known solution that guides clinicians during a carotid artery scan. Here’s how qVH’s AI works:
Probe Navigation Guidance: Detects probe location (CCA, ICA etc.) & orientation (long/short axis) and recommends best way to reach next step of protocol.
Plaque Detection & Characterization Guidance: Auto-detects abnormalities in a live scan (video) and quantifies it when a diagnostic quality image is available
Image Quality Guidance: Tracks image quality while scanning, recommends steps to maintain diagnostic quality & auto-captures images.
Device Setting Guidance: Detects common errors in ultrasound device settings in Pulse Wave (PW) mode and recommends changes for accurate PW velocity measurements. Thereby, preventing errors that could lead to misdiagnosis.
*qVH is not FDA approved/CE marked yet and is currently meant for investigational or research use only.
of strokes in adults are caused by the narrowing of the carotid artery (see image; bottom). Buildup of plaque (fatty deposits) in the arteries is the root cause for this narrowing; a condition that is known as atherosclerosis (see image; top).
Plaques can develop in different vessels leading to artery narrowing/clots and hence reduced blood flow to various parts of our body. This leads to critical events such as:
Evidence suggests that ~0-3%
of the general population have a severe form of this disease but without any symptoms, while ~35%
of diabetic patients have carotid plaques with or without symptoms.
However, preventive measures to reduce disease burden have been limited due to:
Significant developments in the last decade
Price: USG machines have become cheaper (by ~80%), more portable (handheld & wireless) and easily accessible with the arrival of point-of-care ultrasounds (POCUS).
Preference: USG is gradually becoming the preferred modality for disease prevention.
Proof: Real-world evidence suggests benefits in risk-stratification through carotid artery screening.
Advantages: Govt. backed reimbursements for using advanced ultrasound technology.
What is holding back ultrasound-based CVD prevention programs?
POCUS devices have solved problems related to accessibility and affordability. But they have amplified issues related to operator skills since these ultra-portable POCUS devices can be used in any setting (remote areas, sports ground
etc.) by most clinicians. The existing issues are:
In 2020, POCUS accounted for only ~3-5%
of the ultrasound market by revenues. However, global POCUS market revenue is predicted
to increase to $4B by 2030 from $2B in 2020.
qVH has been designed to address all of the issues outlined above. qVH validation has begun at 2 sites in India & Argentina and will be expanded to 8 sites across Asia, Europe and North America within the next 3 months. qVH can be used with all existing ultrasound machines. Our beta sites are using Cart and POCUS machines.