The most useful skin-checking applications allow users to take pictures of their suspicious skin lesions, upload these pictures to a server, the images are first evaluated by an AI algorithm and the results will be later validated by a dermatologist. We introduced several already, check here or here.
Earlier we called these apps an emerging trend, and still stand by this statement. If you are looking for a signature digital health solution, these are great examples, as they:
- address an existing demand
- rely on already existing infrastructure from the patients’ side (e.g.: their mobile phones)
- provide easy and cheap access to patients who otherwise might have difficulties with scheduling dermatology appointments for any reason, like physical distance, insurance problems, anxiety and so on
- allow fast and reliable evaluation of skin lesions, cutting down waiting times
- eliminate unnecessary medical visits, saving time for both patient and clinician
- assist dermatologists, who can check significantly more cases in a given amount of time
We could even conclude that if such a system provides follow-up and access to doctors and treatments should the need arise, these are close to the optimal digital health setup – they filter out non-existing cases and let dermatologists focus on the real issues.
The need for such applications is obvious. Skin cancer is one of the most common cancer types worldwide: one in five people in the U.S. is expected to receive a skin cancer diagnosis during their lifetime. Early detection and treatment are invaluable: almost all skin cancers (both melanoma and nonmelanoma) can be cured if found and treated early. Prevention and detection are the keys. And of course, everyone should have a skin check done from time to time – but not everyone has the option to have it. That is why these apps were one of our bets for the first real-life applications of AI that will be widely used by patients.
Thus we decided to map out this field and collect the globally available applications for skin diagnostics. Here is what we found.
This infographic displays a wide variety of apps – all dedicated to assisting skin-checking. Most come with built-in AI features, but not all of them.
The ones with a green dot are available on that mobile platform whether it’s Android or iOS.
There are lots of apps, with different capabilities
We collected 15 applications, but these offer widely varying services. Before you commit (pay), make sure you understand what you sign up for. What are the services these apps offer?
- Some are purely for self-tracking – these allow you to take pictures of your moles and allow you to track if they change (MoleMapper, UMSkinCheck)
- Others do the same but are AI-backed, where the algorithm will compare if there is a change in your moles (Miiskin, CUBE)
- There are also differences in what kind of skin problems various apps analyse, many are only “interested” in skin cancer (like SkinVision), while others are capable of diagnosing a wide variety of skin conditions (like aysa or Skinive)
- Yet another difference is if they offer you an evaluation by a human dermatologist, some do (Scanoma, SkinIO or DermaDetect/MyDermafor example), but most apps don’t. Please note, that although the apps offering this service can be downloaded for free, the actual consultation with a licenced dermatologist always comes with a price tag.
Regardless of these – major – differences, it is obvious that apps offering some level of dermatology support are becoming widespread, and there is a major demand for these services.
The post The 2023 Skin-Checking Apps Landscape: Infographic appeared first on The Medical Futurist.