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Siemens makes digital hearts beat faster

Its subsidiary for medical technology aims to allow physicians to perform simulations on a digital twin. The idea is to avoid unnecessary surgical operations while enhancing the precision of necessary operations.

15 Sep. 2018
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Siemens makes digital hearts beat faster (Photo: Siemens Healthcare GmbH)

The Erlangen-based company Siemens Healthineers is developing software that generates a digital twin of a patient's heart. This should enable physicians to make more precise diagnoses or, for example, determine the optimal location for a pacemaker before surgery. The side effects of surgical procedures could be clarified in advance and unnecessary surgery avoided.

The software should not only provide digital images, but also make predictions, such as about impending illnesses or the reaction of a patient to a particular treatment. Siemens Healthineers leverages artificial intelligence (AI) for this purpose. To train the algorithms, the company has built up a database containing more than 250 million images, reports and patient data. To test the technology, the developers generated 100 digital twin hearts from patients treated in the past six years. The software's predictions were then compared with the actual course of the disease.