Archive Gastroenterology 2019

On Point

GI: A Hot Specialty About to Get Hotter

Seth Gross

Seth Gross, MD, FACG, FASGE


NYU Langone Health
EASY ACCESS Seth Gross, MD, FACG (right), performs robotic endoscope surgery, which offers stabilization and traction for submucosal dissection in the colon.

It's an exciting time to run a GI facility, isn't it? Endoscopists have access to new tools and technologies that increase their ability to identify tough-to-spot polyps in the colon just as more and younger patients are expected to schedule their first (and hopefully not last) colonoscopies. Innovations in endoscopic instruments continue to blur the line between endoscopy and surgery as more gastroenterologists will be performing endosurgery procedures. Over the next year, keep an eye on the following developments, which are poised to give GI a big boost well into the future.

1Artificial intelligence
Colonoscopy is the gold standard for preventing colon cancer. Incredible strides have been made in identifying precancerous polyps, but colonoscopy is not a perfect screening tool. Enter artificial intelligence, the exciting next step in colonoscopy screenings. The technology is based on machine learning and has the potential to significantly improve adenoma detection rates.

Artificial intelligence platforms are "taught" to identify high-risk areas of the colon wall by "learning" from tens of thousands of images of both normal and abnormal mucosal tissue. As an endoscopist withdraws the colonoscope, the artificial intelligence platform that's integrated into the scope assess the colon's walls and places a virtual box around areas where polyps are likely to be, alerting the endoscopist to take a closer look.

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