IBM’s Watson to Assist Cancer Patients

IBM’s Watson to Assist Cancer Patients

IBM and the American Cancer Society have joined hands to launch a virtual advisor that will help cancer patients fight against their illness. IBM is planning to introduce its Watson technology in cancer research and medication. The virtual adviser will use machine information to provide customized details and suggestions to patients.

Watson will first understand the kind of cancer that the patient is suffering from and also the stage at which the cancer currently is. The adviser will also look into the treatment which the patient has undergone till date.

The adviser will then combine this information with other data and make an effort to provide suggestions to patient. It will also answer their queries. Patients will have no problems in asking questions and also receiving audible replies, since Watson is capable of processing voice recognition and natural language.

Watson will take into account the experiences of patients suffering from similar illnesses as the particular patient it is talking to and will subsequently reply on the basis of data regarding signs and options for the query of the patient.

Over the period of time, Watson’s customization level will increase as it gathers more and more information about the user, which will further improve the quality of suggestions given by the tool.

"As a physician, I can tell you how challenging it is to know so much information—whether it's information in the medical charts or information about cancer treatments in journals or textbooks. It's humanly impossible to know all that information, so the power of cognitive, the power of Watson, is significant," said the MD and Chief Health Officer of IBM Watson Health, Kyu Rhee.

Watson will be trained using the enormous data available with both IBM and the cancer society. Cancer.org's comprehensive data on over 70 cancer topics and the society's National Cancer Information Center’s consolidated information on self-management and support groups, along with wellness activities and cancer education will also be fed in Watson.

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