Scientists from Google and its health-tech subsidiary Verily have discovered a new way to assess a person’s risk of heart disease using machine learning, The Verge reports.
The company’s software analyzes the back of a patient’s eye to accurately deduce data, including their age, blood pressure, and whether or not they smoke. This information can then be used to predict their risk of suffering a major cardiac event — such as a heart attack — with about the same accuracy as current leading methods.
Since it doesn’t require a blood test, the algorithm potentially makes it quicker and easier for doctors to analyze a patient’s cardiovascular risk. But more testing will be needed before it can be used in a clinical setting. A paper describing the work was published earlier this year in the journal Biomedical Engineering.