hidradenitis suppurativa

AIHS4, A revolutionary step forward in the treatment of Hidradenitis suppurativa

Table of Contents

    Introduction

    The future of dermatology is now within hands reach thanks to Legit.Health‘s revolutionary AIHS4 (Automatic, International Hidradenitis Suppurativa Severity Scoring System). The researchers have developed a tool that processes smartphone images and automatically analyses them using the same criteria as the IHS4.

    Is widely known that objective, reliable, and precise outcome measures are key to the practice of evidence-based medicine. In the case of hidradenitis suppurativa, the IHS4 is the most modern and reliable measurement tool, widely recommended for its use in clinical trials. That’s why Legit.Health has chosen it as a base for its new and revolutionary technology.

    The origins of IHS4

    Before the development of the IHS4 in 2017, other systems such as the Hurley classification or the MSS ( Modified Sartorius Score) were widely used by physicians. Although these older systems lacked granularity and precision, the absence of an alternative method made them widespread in both clinical practice and trials.

    However, it [Hurley’s classification] is static and was not designed as a dynamic score for accurate assessment of the extent of inflammation within each stage.

    C.C. Zouboulis, T. Tzellos, A. Kyrgidis et all, on behalf of the European Hidradenitis Suppurativa Foundation Investigator Group. Development and validation of the International Hidradenitis Suppurativa Severity Score System (IHS4), a novel dynamic scoring system to assess HS severity

    The IHS4 was developed with those issues in mind, and the panel of experts that put it together focused on reaching a more objective, precise, and reliable way of measuring the severity of hidradenitis suppurativa.

    The formula developed by the panel of experts added the three more common symptoms of Hidradenitis suppurativa (and multiplied them by a factor relevant to how indicative they were to the severity of the disease. This way, the number of nodules is multiplied by 1, the number of abscesses by 2, and the number of draining tunnels (fistulae/sinuses) by 4.

    All of this added, made the IHS4 score.

    Said score is then compared against a small reference table that assigns an interpretable meaning to each bracket of scores.

    • spaLess than 3 points: Mild
    • spaBetween 4 and 10 points: Moderate
    • spaMore than 11 points: Severe
    AIHS4
IHS4 = 0, Inactive HS
Hidradenitis Suppurativa

    IHS4 = 0, Inactive HS
    1 nondraining tunel = 0
    1 Papule (<10 mm) = 0
    1 Pustule = 0

    AIHS4
IHS4 = 3, Mild HS
Hidradenitis Suppurativa

    IHS4 = 2, Mild HS
    1 Papule (<10 mm) = 0
    1 Abscess x 2 = 2

    AIHS4
IHS4 = 3, Mild HS
Hidradenitis Suppurativa

    IHS4 = 3, Mild HS
    3 Nodules x1 = 3
    1 Nondraining tunnel = 0

    AIHS4
IHS4 = 4, Moderate HS
Hidradenitis Suppurativa

    IHS4 = 4, Moderate HS
    3 Nondraining tunnels = 0
    1 Draning tunnel = 4

    AIHS4
IHS4 = 8, Moderate HS
Hidradenitis Suppurativa

    IHS4 = 8, Moderate HS
    2 Draining tunnels x4 = 8

    AIHS4
IHS4 = 27, Severe HS
Hidradenitis Suppurativa

    IHS4 = 27, Severe HS
    3 Nodules x1 = 3
    4 Abscesses x 2= 8
    4 Draning Tunnels x4 = 16

    C.C. Zouboulis, T. Tzellos, A. Kyrgidis et all, on behalf of the European Hidradenitis Suppurativa Foundation Investigator Group. Development and validation of the International Hidradenitis Suppurativa Severity Score System (IHS4), a novel dynamic scoring system to assess HS severity

    Limitations of the pen and paper IHS4

    The main goal of the IHS4 is to provide doctors with a tool to assess the severity of the disease in a precise and consistent way for routine evaluations and clinical trials in a fast and easy-to-use manner.

    A precise classification of disease severity is based on the subjective assessment of the clinical manifestation by a physician, so the doctor’s experience plays a significant role.

    Katarzyna Włodarek, Aleksandra Stefaniak, Łukasz Matusiak, Jacek C. Szepietowski. Could Residents Adequately Assess the Severity of Hidradenitis Suppurativa? Interrater and intrarater Reliability Assessment of Major Scoring Systems

    Despite its contributions to solving the issues of its predecessors, the IHS4 presents the same issues as many other scoring systems: a high degree of subjectivity derived from the visual nature of the test and a process reported by many doctors as too time-consuming and tedious.

    Speed up the pathology reporting process and improve the patient’s quality of life.

    Stepping over digital calculators

    The case of the IHS4 is a very special one. Unlike most dermatological scoring systems for other diseases, such as PASI or SCORAD, the relatively new development of this method has allowed the medical community to skip one common yet outdated step in the advancement of the state of the art for this field.

    This step, consisting of developing a computer calculator, tries to tackle one of the main issues with any scoring system: The time needed to apply it properly. They do it by turning the many calculations the doctors usually need to make into an automatic process.

    This is yet to happen in the diagnosis of hidradenitis suppurativa, as the IHS4 is a relatively young scoring system and there has not been enough time for one of these calculators to emerge.

    Instead of that, with AIHS4, we are jumping right into the future of dermatology by addressing both the issues of time and objectivity within the traditional method.

    AIHS4, Hidradenitis suppurativa, Automatic Scoring Sistem, IHS4

    How do we know what scoring system is better?

    Among the many criteria for rating the quality of outcome measures, some stand out as key to determining whether a scoring system is useful:

    • timer1. Ease of useCan be applied easily, given constraints of time and money
    • gradient2. Sensitivity to changeAbility to detect clinically important changes over time
    • theater_comedy3. Interobserver reliabilityDifferent investigators provide identical results
    • thumbs_up_down4. Intra-observer variabilityRepeated measurement by the same investigator provide identical results
    • speed5. InterpretabilityAssigns qualitative meaning to scores (mild, severe…)

    Methods and definitions to rate the quality of outcome measures. Schmitt, J., Langan, S., Deckert, S., Svensson, A., von Kobyletzki, L., Thomas, K., & Spuls, P. (2013). Assessment of clinical signs of atopic dermatitis: A systematic review and recommendation. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, 132(6), 1337–1347. doi:10.1016/j.jaci.2013.07.008

    7 ways in witch AIHS4 is better

    The revolutionary tool developed by Legit.Health allows next-generation dermatologists to practice evidence-based medicine while speeding up the reporting process for the pathology and increasing the patient’s autonomy and control.

    This clinical data and communication app uses deep learning algorithms to relieve doctors from the tedious manual calculation of scoring systems, by automatically grading lesions by analyzing smartphone images and small patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs). In other words: the tool will automatically fill in most of the dermatology scoring systems, such as PASISCORADUASGAGS, and of course, IHS4.

    The main goal of AIHS4 is to provide a tool to record data precisely and consistently for routine evaluations and clinical studies

    Pen and PaperDigitalAutomatic (AI)
    Self SupervisionPerforms diagnosis
    Ease of use≈ 600 seconds≈ 420 seconds≈ 23 seconds
    Sensitivity to change0 to 40 to 40 to 100
    Interobserver variabilityMedium (20%)Medium (20%)Lowest (8%)
    Intra-observer variabilityHighHighZero

    1. AIHS4 improves the rate of correct diagnosis

    The algorithm created by Legit.Health isn’t limited to measuring the severity of the affection as the IHS4 does, it also has been trained using the input of top dermatologists to be able to distinguish between 232 pathologies, including most abscess-producing diseases.

    Thus, AIHS4 will assist the doctor in the disease assessment process, not only by making it quicker by providing relevant information but improving the rate of correct diagnosis by 23%

    Speed up the pathology reporting process and improve the patient’s quality of life.

    2. Easier to use and faster than its analogic counterpart

    One of the main advantages of the AIHS4 over the traditional methods is its speed. Where an experienced doctor might need six or seven minutes to completely fill in and calculate the IHS4, Legit.Health‘s algorithm only needs 23 seconds to get the final score.

    The disease severity assessment is often confusing, especially for young, unexperienced dermatologists.

    Katarzyna Włodarek, Aleksandra Stefaniak, Łukasz Matusiak, Jacek C. Szepietowski. Could Residents Adequately Assess the Severity of Hidradenitis Suppurativa? Interrater and intrarater Reliability Assessment of Major Scoring Systems

    This entails an incredible advantage for its users, both from a time management and clinical perspective. The sad fact is that many physicians won’t take the time to properly fill in any scoring system at all, and will rely on a gut estimate to determine the severity of the affection. This happens because traditional scoring systems are widely considered too tedious and time-consuming for a practical application on a day-to-day basis.

    Thanks to AIHS4 that should no longer be a concern. This fast and easy-to-use tool puts its usability at the forefront of its design and strives to facilitate the practice of evidence-based medicine.

    3. AIHS4 can detect small changes in the evolution of the pathology

    Legit.Health‘s tool analyzes the pathologies using a validated scoring system that has both the lowest MID (Minimal important Difference) and is sensible to the lowest LDC (Lowest Detectable Change), which means the algorithm analyzes every image with more precision and attention to detail than any human observer would.

    Furthermore, it has a higher validity and reliability while maintaining comparable clinimetric properties, thanks to the intrinsic functioning of computer vision algorithms. 

    Given the complexity of determining the severity of a disease like hidradenitis suppurativa, the AIHS4 provides the kind of granularity and precision needed to provide the doctor with all the information needed for a successful diagnosis.

    4. Provides a significant reduction in inter-observer variability

    The experimental results show that AIHS4 outperforms significantly the baseline methods when it comes to inter-observer variability, as the algorithm achieves a mean absolute percentage of error of just 8%, way lower than the usual 20% that is observed in the classical application of the IHS4.

    Estimating is guessing, counting is measuring

    Alfonso Medela, CAIO

    Additionally, the reliability of this method will only increase as time passes and the technology gets better, making it possible for the automatic assessment of severity using algorithms to become even more precise in the future.

    Do you want to see the Automatic SCORAD algorithms in action?

    5. AIHS4 reduces the intra-observer variability to zero

    Because is based on an algorithm, AIHS4 eliminates completely the intra-observer variability, as every image and calculation is stored in the database. In other words, the app has a perfect memory of every picture saved and every diagnosis made.

    Legit.Health allows the doctor to not rely on his memory when assessing the severity of the affection and focusing on the analysis of the objective data stored in the app reduces considerably the risk of misremembering, providing a more objective, accurate, and precise way of tracing the development of the disease.

    This becomes especially important in clinical trials, where reducing this kind of variability is key to gathering the precise data required in this kind of study.

    6. The data is more accessible and easier to read

     Legit.Health‘s interface provides access to all the relevant information about the patient in an easy-to-read manner.

    Every data derived from the AIHS4 is clearly displayed on the screen, showing the severity of the affection and the different factors considered by the algorithm when analyzing the image and their punctuations.

    On the other hand, easy to lose paper trails are a thing of the past, especially when you can have all the patient’s information, test results, and pictures in a digital database that is being constantly backed up.

    AIHS4, Hidradenitis suppurativa, Automatic Scoring Sistem, IHS4

    7. An easy way of following the progress of a treatment

    As hidradenitis suppurativa is a chronic disease, the post-diagnosis follow-up is crucial for the good development of the treatment.

    Legit.Health improves the communication channels between doctor and patient, allowing them to become a more active part of their treatment. The app achieves this by giving the user an easy and reliable way of sending accurate data to the doctor.

    Additionally, the app displays the data in an easy-to-read graph showing the progress of the affection, making answering the usually difficult question “Am I getting better, Doctor?” a piece of cake.

    Do you want to see the Automatic SCORAD algorithms in action?

    In conclusion

    Is not hard to see how a technology that helps doctors to better manage their time and to collect data more reliably and consistently is the future of the medical field.

    Thanks to Legit.Health, doctors across the globe can improve their correct diagnosis rate by 23% and make treatment easier to follow for the patient by turning them into active participants in their own recovery while enabling the doctor to practice evidence-based medicine.

    We cannot improve what we cannot measure, and thanks to AIHS4 and Legit.Health the future of the study and treatment of hidradenitis suppurativa is brighter than ever.

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