Deep Medicine: How Artificial Intelligence Can Make Healthcare Human Again 1st Edition
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"Topol passionately and persuasively sets out the transformational potential of deep medicine."―Lancet
"An optimistic vision of medicine's rapidly approaching future that should be required reading for the public and medical people alike."―Booklist
"Enlightening... Anyone with an avid curiosity about the future of medicine will find this worthwhile."―Publishers Weekly
"A gimlet-eyed look at the role of computers in medicine...A cogent argument for a more humane -- and human -- medicine, assisted by technology but not driven by it."―Kirkus
"Eric Topol has a unique knack for bringing us to the frontiers of medicine in his books, and this one is no exception. A compulsively readable, elegantly written, important account, Deep Medicine will fundamentally change the way you view the future of medical technologies and their impact on our lives. This book is challenging, thoughtful, and provocative. I cannot recommend it enough."―Siddhartha Mukherjee, author of The Emperor of All Maladies
"Healthcare offers the best opportunity for symbiotic combination of artificial intelligence and humanity. Eric Topol's book is the definitive work from someone who deeply understands both healthcare and AI. I strongly recommend the book, and hope it connects medical practitioners and AI researchers, and help them understand that only by working together, can our shared dreams of health and longevity be reached."―Kai-Fu Lee, bestselling author of AI Superpowers
"Deep Medicine is a fascinating tour of how machine learning is transforming medical research, with medical care on the horizon. Topol reminds us that as our machines get smarter and capable of taking over more of our tasks, we must become more human, and more humane, to compensate. Our most brilliant AI tools will help us learn more about ourselves--body and mind--than we can even imagine, but they cannot empathize with a patient. This book is an excellent step toward directing all that knowledge into creating a healthier society, not just healthier individuals."―Garry Kasparov, author of Deep Thinking
"The promise of Artificial Intelligence is deeply human, and its impact is only growing in industry and daily life alike. Deep Medicine is an insightful read about the incredible potential of AI and medicine, written from a refreshingly human-centered perspective. It's not only a landmark book, but the start of a truly historic conversation about the implications of this exciting technology in medicine."―Fei-Fei Li, professor of computer science at Stanford University and director of the Stanford Artificial Intelligence Lab and the Stanford Vision Lab
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That is not necessarily a novel prediction. Numerous authors have highlighted the increasing role of machine-learning/AI in healthcare (and more than a few tech companies have hyped it). Topol acknowledges all that enthusiasm, and using a short set of examples hihglight the value of AI in the first chapter itself. The rest of the book is a systematic expansion of where Topol sees the biggest opportunities in AI are - to the extent he calls it the next industrial revolution.
Topol does an excellent job in differentiating clinicians as those that work with and without patterns - these two chapters highlighting the complexities and skill set required to master a cognitive, integrative process is perhaps the most interesting part of the book. These highlight the key assumptions AI developers should (and shouldn't) make while designing their systems. The discussions on how health systems are approaching AI and ML is interesting, but a reader familiar with the academic literature may brush it off as old news; however, Topol manages to convey the key insights and implications that can be extrapolated to other applications. He also provides an interesting take on the role of AI in nutrition and mental health and then becomes very generous with imagination in his discussion on virtual medical assistant.
Imaginative, informative, and inspiring - but Topol, almost always ignores the question of "who will pay for it" that has dogged the field of mHealth etc for a while. A reader would have benefited from his expanded views on this issue as well. Overall, an excellent read for anyone remotely interested in healthcare or technology and a wonderful thought-starter for any start-up.
If you heard Dr. Topol on NPR, you probably got a glimpse as to what he is attempting to do in this book. He wants to introduce us to the future of medicine, the way AI (artificial intelligence) and technology can help us move into that future. If you listened long enough, you may have heard a frustrated physician express his views. Topol also, once again, recounts the tale of the medical mystery of “Robert,” and how his misdiagnosis “represents everything wrong with medicine today.” Medicine, as it has been practiced and is being practiced, failed not only Robert, but Topol himself. Add the rest of us as far as he’s concerned. He feels this book, as far as futuristic medicine goes, is the “most far-reaching one.”
Topol begins by explaining the three-fold components of the deep medicine model. He quickly shifts into what he calls “shallow medicine,” the medicine he assumes most physicians now practice. According to Topol, in part, this results in “extraordinary waste, suboptimal outcomes, and unnecessary harm.” I feel he is not giving his peers credit for what I see as an incredible shift toward the use of AI and high-tech practices in medicine. For example, the physicians and specialists I see are in the trenches, already utilizing deep medicine. Had they not been, I would have long been in the bone yard pushing up daisies. However, I do love Topol’s remarkable compilation of studies, discussions on the positive impact AI tools can have in today’s medicine, the importance of patient advocacy, etc.
For those who love to read about science and medicine (I do), this is a fabulous resource. My only quibble with Dr. Topol are a few sweeping opinion-based views. For example, when he talks about shallow medical practice that leads to “plenty of misdiagnoses and unnecessary procedures,” he takes a stab at the new blood pressure guidelines outlined by the American Heart Association and American College of Cardiology in 2017. Topol goes on to say that this is “leading to the diagnosis of more than 30 million more Americans with hypertension despite the lact of any solid evidence to back up this guideline.” This, according to Topol, “was misdiagnosis at an epidemic scale.”
This statement is rather irresponsible at best considering the guidelines were changed in 2017 for good reason. The study, which Topol doesn’t mention, was the Systolic Blood Pressure Intervention Trial (SPRINT). Check it out if you will. This book is quite readable, fun actually, but make sure you consult with your doctor before tossing out your meds. I for one am seeing physicians practicing deep medicine and am not finding those doctors Topol claims can be overconfident, condescending, arrogant, or simply not caring. I would suggest a bit of due diligence and a bit of extra research as well as a trip to your physician before making any lifestyle changes one may read about in this book. The book has an excellent index, source notes, and numerous charts and graphs for reference.
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