Predicting Medications from Diagnostic Codes with Recurrent Neural Networks

Jacek M. Bajor, Thomas A. Lasko

Nov 03, 2016 (modified: Feb 09, 2017) ICLR 2017 conference submission readers: everyone
  • Abstract: It is a surprising fact that electronic medical records are failing at one of their primary purposes, that of tracking the set of medications that the patient is actively taking. Studies estimate that up to 50% of such lists omit active drugs, and that up to 25% of all active medications do not appear on the appropriate patient list. Manual efforts to maintain these lists involve a great deal of tedious human labor, which could be reduced by computational tools to suggest likely missing or incorrect medications on a patient’s list. We report here an application of recurrent neural networks to predict the likely therapeutic classes of medications that a patient is taking, given a sequence of the last 100 billing codes in their record. Our best model was a GRU that achieved high prediction accuracy (micro-averaged AUC 0.93, Label Ranking Loss 0.076), limited by hardware constraints on model size. Additionally, examining individual cases revealed that many of the predictions marked incorrect were likely to be examples of either omitted medications or omitted billing codes, supporting our assertion of a substantial number of errors and omissions in the data, and the likelihood of models such as these to help correct them.
  • TL;DR: Applying recurrent neural networks to fix errors and omissions in patient medication records.
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  • Keywords: Deep learning, Supervised Learning, Applications