A team of researchers from the University of California and the University of Surrey have identified and predicted the development of cancer symptom clusters using a new AI.
The researchers studied the structure and relationship of several symptoms by using a technique called Network Analysis (NA). The data from thesymptoms were collected from more than 1300 patients receiving chemotherapy.
Later on, the study was showcased by Scientific Reports.
The patients reported symptoms such as fatigue, vomiting, dry mouth, nervousness, numbness, hot flushes,and drowsiness.
The symptoms were later collected and grouped into three networks- distress, occurrence, and severity. After categorizing, the team found vomiting to be central through NA.
Reports have revealed that every year, 360,000 people in the UK are diagnosed with cancer. Over half of the new cases are reported in these areas- bowel, prostate, lungs, and breast. Moreover, 28% of cancer patients are treated with curative or palliative chemotherapy.
According to Payam Barnaghi, Professor at the University of Surrey, NA has been used for the first time to study the connection between common symptoms, taken from cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy.
The AI could be helpful in planning the treatment of future patients, assisting them to manage their symptoms effectively across their healthcare journey.
According to Christine Miaskowski, a member of the University of California, the new approach will pave the way for the team to create and test novel and more targeted interventions. It will cut down the burden among patients undergoing chemotherapy.