A new study has found that artificial intelligence is better than humans at detecting skin cancer.
The study, published in the journal Annals of Oncology, put dermatologists against a computer that had been trained to tell the difference between cancerous skin lesions and benign ones. In the end, the dermatologists were only 86.6% accurate at diagnosing skin cancer, while the computer was able to diagnose issues with a 95% accuracy.
The 58 dermatologists involved in the study came from a variety of backgrounds and 17 countries. A little more than half were considered “expert” level with more than five years experience, while 19% had between two and five years of experience, and 29% had less than two years of work experience.
The computer was also less likely to diagnose a benign mole as cancer, something that would result in a patient undergoing unnecessary stress and surgery.
The hope is that the technology could eventually be implemented as a way to diagnose skin cancer in its early days before it spreads.