Dr Aaron Lee Discusses the Future of AI in Ophthalmology

Aaron Lee, MD, an associate professor of ophthalmology at University of Washington, describes how artificial intelligence (AI) is used in ophthalmology now and how it could be utilized in the future.

In the future, we're going to see artificial intelligence algorithms integrated into almost every aspect of clinical ophthalmology, said Aaron Lee, MD, an associate professor of ophthalmology at University of Washington. Lee’s session "How Will AI Change My Practice in the Next 5 Years?" was presented at the American Academy of Ophthalmology's 2021 conference.

Transcript:

Can you introduce yourself and explain your work?

Sure, so my name is Aaron Lee. I am an associate professor of ophthalmology at the University of Washington in Seattle. I'm a vitreoretinal surgeon by training and I lead a large lab in what we call computational ophthalmology. We have about 15 people who are working on translating novel computational ideas into ophthalmology.

What are some ways you predict artificial intelligence (AI) will be integrated into ophthalmology practices in the coming years?

That's a great question and it's one that I feel like is going to evolve and change over time. It's really hard to tell exactly how AI is going to play a role in the coming years. Right now, AI is already integrated into our clinical workflows with diabetic retinopathy screening with the 2 FDA-approved algorithms. They are already being deployed and used in the United States. I think more and more, we're going to start to see AI algorithms being integrated into almost every aspect of clinical ophthalmology. How quickly that's going to happen is anybody's to guess. The rate limiting factor tends to be more of the regulatory hurdles that need to be overcome before they can be safely deployed in the field.