Receive a weekly summary and discussion of the top papers of the week by leading researchers in the field.

In Neurotrauma reports

The accurate prediction of neurological outcomes in patients with cervical spinal cord injury (SCI) is difficult because of heterogeneity in patient characteristics, treatment strategies, and radiographic findings. Although machine learning algorithms may increase the accuracy of outcome predictions in various fields, limited information is available on their efficacy in the management of SCI. We analyzed data from 165 patients with cervical SCI, and extracted important factors for predicting prognoses. Extreme gradient boosting (XGBoost) as a machine learning model was applied to assess the reliability of a machine learning algorithm to predict neurological outcomes compared with that of conventional methodology, such as a logistic regression or decision tree. We used regularly obtainable data as predictors, such as demographics, magnetic resonance variables, and treatment strategies. Predictive tools, including XGBoost, a logistic regression, and a decision tree, were applied to predict neurological improvements in the functional motor status (ASIA [American Spinal Injury Association] Impairment Scale [AIS] D and E) 6 months after injury. We evaluated predictive performance, including accuracy and the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC). Regarding predictions of neurological improvements in patients with cervical SCI, XGBoost had the highest accuracy (81.1%), followed by the logistic regression (80.6%) and the decision tree (78.8%). Regarding AUC, the logistic regression showed 0.877, followed by XGBoost (0.867) and the decision tree (0.753). XGBoost reliably predicted neurological alterations in patients with cervical SCI. The utilization of predictive machine learning algorithms may enhance personalized management choices through pre-treatment categorization of patients.

Inoue Tomoo, Ichikawa Daisuke, Ueno Taro, Cheong Maxwell, Inoue Takashi, Whetstone William D, Endo Toshiki, Nizuma Kuniyasu, Tominaga Teiji

2020

cervical spinal cord injury, extreme gradient boosting, machine learning, receiver operating curve