The London Clinic, located in the Harley Street Medical Area, is the first hospital in the UK to employ GI Genius, a device that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to enhance the quality of colonoscopies, offering a new solution for the early detection of colorectal cancer.
The GI Genius module – produced by global medical device company Medtronic – is the first system worldwide to use AI to detect colorectal polyps. The device acts as a second observer during colonoscopies, helping to assist doctors by identifying lesions and small mucosal abnormalities that may signal cancer.
Studies have shown that having a second observer can increase polyp detection rates. Every 1% increase in adenoma detection rate reduces the risk of colorectal cancer by 3%.
The pioneering GI Genius system works by analysing the video stream during colonoscopy, using advanced AI to highlight the presence of pre-cancerous lesions with a visual marker in real-time. The device offers the potential to improve diagnosis and outcomes for patients with colorectal cancer.
Dr Rehan Haidry, consultant gastroenterologist at The London Clinic, said: “We are thrilled to introduce the GI Genius system at The London Clinic. The system represents an important advancement in technology and is a crucial step in the fight against colorectal cancer, supporting both patients and doctors.
“The technology is incredibly powerful and is proven to be extremely precise in identifying lesions in the colonic mucosa that can be difficult to detect. Some polyps can be very small, and during colonoscopy procedures you are examining the colon, which is five feet long, so it’s vital to be as thorough and diligent as possible.
“Having a second set of eyes that can pick up the smallest change in real-time means we can focus our attention on the right places, which can be life-saving for patients.”
Colorectal cancer (also known as bowel cancer) is the fourth most common cancer in the UK – and the second biggest cancer killer in the country, claiming more than 16,000 lives a year. Colorectal cancer is treatable and curable, especially if diagnosed early. However, this drops significantly as the disease develops. This is why early, accurate detection is crucial.
The best prevention is regular screening tests such as colonoscopy, which helps to examine the inside of the bowels to identify the presence of polyps (or adenomas), which may transform into carcinomas (cancer) if not detected and removed early. Over 90% of colorectal carcinomas are adenocarcinomas which can be detected in colonoscopy screening procedures.
Research shows that the adenoma detection rate (ADR) can vary greatly between endoscopists. A recently released randomised trial found that computer-aided polyp detection (CADe) can increase adenoma detection rates (ADR) versus high-definition (HD) colonoscopy alone. Much of the improved performance was in the detection of smaller polyps (<10 mm), which are more likely to be missed during screening.