Progress and Prospects on Skin Imaging Technology, Teledermatology and Artificial Intelligence in Dermatology
Dermatology is an independent clinical secondary discipline established on the basis of cognitive features. With the emergence of digital technology, remote transmission technology and internet technology, dermatology has become the easiest discipline to integrate with these technologies and establish clinical application scenarios.
At present, the development of skin imaging technology (dermoscopy, reflectance confocal microscopy, etc.), teledermatology and artificial intelligence has profoundly and comprehensively changed the characteristics, service model and public influence of dermatology.
However, geographical and inter-hospital differences exist in skin imaging technology level, mainly due to different levels of accessibility of skin imaging devices and the dermatologists’ skills in operating them. For example, dermoscopy is commonly owned by dermatologists in high-income countries, while not so much in the low and middle ones - in China, for example, only about a quarter of dermatologists have access to it, many of which are not yet able to use it properly. Such differences also exist in different regions and hospitals within one country. The accessibility of skin imaging devices to dermatologists and their skills in operating them need to be improved.
Teledermatology is one of the effective approaches to decrease the differences of healthcare quality among regions and hospitals and enable an overall improvement. Teledermatology is enabled by remote transmission technology and internet technology, and is gradually changing the way healthcare is provided. Endeavors to provide remote consultation and care through telemedicine platforms have started in the last years in several countries. However, there are also challenges such as in administration, management, as well as privacy and security.
Artificial intelligence is also playing an increasingly important role in empowering dermatologists. It is based on big data which is made of high-quality skin images (including skin photos, dermoscopy images, skin confocal images, skin pathology images), and assists dermatologists in making clinical decisions in diagnosis, evaluation and treatment. Progress have been achieved through new efforts in development and application of artificial intelligence support in dermatology, such as the artificially intelligent diagnosis algorithm for skin cancer by Stanford researchers based on the US data, the International Skin Imaging Collaboration (ISIC) with its annual challenges and China’s Chinese Skin Image Database.
This research topic aims at collecting and presenting the latest endeavors, progresses, experiences and challenges in skin imaging technology, teledermatology and artificial intelligence in dermatology to provide guidance on future research and its translation. We welcome all article types including original research papers, reviews, perspectives, case reports on basic and clinical research, technological innovation, and transformative applications.
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Journal of Clinical & Experimental Dermatology Research