Artificial intelligence for the diagnosis of retinopathy of prematurity: A systematic review of current algorithms

Ashwin Ramanathan, Sam Ebenezer Athikarisamy, Geoffrey C. Lam

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Background/Objectives With the increasing survival of premature infants, there is an increased demand to provide adequate retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) services. Wide field retinal imaging (WFDRI) and artificial intelligence (AI) have shown promise in the field of ROP and have the potential to improve the diagnostic performance and reduce the workload for screening ophthalmologists. The aim of this review is to systematically review and provide a summary of the diagnostic characteristics of existing deep learning algorithms. Subject/Methods Two authors independently searched the literature, and studies using a deep learning system from retinal imaging were included. Data were extracted, assessed and reported using PRISMA guidelines. Results Twenty-seven studies were included in this review. Nineteen studies used AI systems to diagnose ROP, classify the staging of ROP, diagnose the presence of pre-plus or plus disease, or assess the quality of retinal images. The included studies reported a sensitivity of 71%-100%, specificity of 74-99% and area under the curve of 91-99% for the primary outcome of the study. AI techniques were comparable to the assessment of ophthalmologists in terms of overall accuracy and sensitivity. Eight studies evaluated vascular severity scores and were able to accurately differentiate severity using an automated classification score. Conclusion Artificial intelligence for ROP diagnosis is a growing field, and many potential utilities have already been identified, including the presence of plus disease, staging of disease and a new automated severity score. AI has a role as an adjunct to clinical assessment; however, there is insufficient evidence to support its use as a sole diagnostic tool currently.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2518-2526
Number of pages9
Issue number12
Early online date28 Dec 2022
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2023


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  • Screening for Retinopathy of Prematurity

    Athikarisamy, S., 2023, (Unpublished)

    Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

    6 Downloads (Pure)

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