Purpose: Frontotemporal dementia (FTD) is a neurodegenerative disorder associated with a poor prognosis and a substantial reduction in quality of life. The rate of misdiagnosis of FTD is very high, with patients often waiting for years without a firm diagnosis. This study investigates the current state of the misdiagnosis of FTD using a novel artificial intelligence-based algorithm. Patients & Methods: An artificial intelligence algorithm has been developed to retrospectively analyse the patient journeys of 47 individuals diagnosed with FTD (age range 52–80). The algorithm analysed the efficiency of patient pathways by utilizing a reward signal of ‒1 to +1 to assess the symptoms, imaging techniques, and clinical judgement in both behavioural and language variants of the disease. Results: On average, every patient was subjected to 4.93 investigations, of which 67.4% were radiological scans. From first presentation it took on average 939 days for a firm diagnosis. The mean time between appointments was 204 days, and the average patient had their diagnosis altered 7.37 times during their journey. The algorithm proposed improvements by evaluating the interventions that resulted in a decreased reward signal to both the individual and the population as a whole. Conclusions: The study proves that the algorithm can efficiently guide clinical practice and improve the accuracy of the diagnosis of FTD whilst making the process of auditing faster and more economically viable.
- Artificial intelligence
- Cognitive disorders and dementia
- Computational neurology
- Frontotemporal dementia