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Using a Deep Learning Model to Address Interobserver Variability in the Evaluation of Ulcerative Colitis (UC) Severity.

The use of endoscopic images for the accurate assessment of ulcerative colitis (UC) severity is crucial to determining appropriate treatment. However, experts may interpret these images differently, leading to inconsistent diagnoses. This study aims to address the issue by introducing a standardization method based on deep learning. We collected 254 rectal endoscopic images from 115 patients with UC, and five experts in endoscopic image interpretation assigned classification labels based on the Ulcerative Colitis Endoscopic Index of Severity (UCEIS) scoring system. Interobserver variance analysis of the five experts yielded an intraclass correlation coefficient of 0.8431 for UCEIS scores and a kappa coefficient of 0.4916 when the UCEIS scores were transformed into UC severity measures. To establish a consensus, we created a model that considered only the images and labels on which more than half of the experts agreed. This consensus model achieved an accuracy of 0.94 when tested with 50 images. Compared with models trained from individual expert labels, the consensus model demonstrated the most reliable prediction results.

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