Every year almost 10 billion searches on Google are related to skin, nail and hair problems. In addition, 2 billion people around the world suffer from dermatological problems. And there is a worldwide shortage of specialists.

To help people with questions, Google introduced Dermatology Assist, a dermatological assistance tool powered by artificial intelligence which, through a cell phone camera, helps identify problems in the dermis, ranging from a simple skin rash to melanoma.

“Our AI-powered dermatology care tool is a web-based application that we hope to launch as a pilot later this year, so that it is easier to discover what could be happening with your skin “, they indicated in their blog.

The system –according to Google- uses many of the techniques that detect diabetic eye disease or lung cancer in CT scans.

Dermatology Assist is an AI-powered dermatology assistance tool.

The company clarified that the application is not designed to provide a diagnosis, prescribe ointments, or substitute for consulting a doctor.

“The solution based on artificial intelligence analyzes the information based on 288 variables to provide a list of possible matches that should then be further investigated, ”he remarked during Google IO 2021.

Once the application is activated, all you have to do is focus the phone’s camera to record three images of the affected area, from different angles.

The software will then ask questions about the skin type, if the problem is persistent or spontaneous and other symptoms that help the tool reduce the chances.

The Dermatology Assist can detect any skin condition.

For each matching condition, the tool display dermatologist-reviewed information and answers to frequently asked questions, along with similar matching images from the web.

“The predictive model takes into account factors such as age, sex, race and skin types, from pale skin that doesn’t tan to brown skin that rarely burns”, They explain.

Digital training

To adjust the AI ​​they trained the software with 65,000 images and case data of diagnosed skin conditions, millions of images cured of skin problems and thousands of examples of healthy skin, in different demographic groups.

The Dermatology Assist is not the first piece of artificial intelligence for health care to hit the market, but it is possibly pioneer in putting a free consultation service in the hands of the public instead of specialists.

“This tool is the culmination of more than three years of research and development of products in machine learning. To date, we have published several peer-reviewed articles that validate our AI model and more are in the works, ”they noted.

To get around privacy issues with health data, Google ensures that will not use the images obtained in the service to target advertising and that it will only save images to further train the algorithm, if users give it explicit permission to do so.

As there are still some adjustments to be made before being officially presented, the company is looking for volunteers who want to test the tool.

Those interested should leave their data in

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