Home Artificial Intelligence Florian Hillen, CEO & Founding father of VideaHealth – Interview Series

Florian Hillen, CEO & Founding father of VideaHealth – Interview Series

Florian Hillen, CEO & Founding father of VideaHealth – Interview Series

Florian Hillen is the CEO & Founding father of VideaHealth, a platform on the mission to enhance patient health through the facility of AI. By leveraging algorithms, analytics and health data, Videa is unlocking health and economic value across the dental value chain – making dentistry more transparent for dentists, insurers and patients.

Once you were at MIT, you conducted extensive research on the intersection of AI, healthcare and oral health. What were a few of the biggest takeaways from this research?

I studied medicine in Germany, worked with several healthcare startups (including founding one), and all the time knew I desired to do something impactful, so my focus at MIT and Harvard Research was where AI can have the most important impact on health. I researched AI in radiology, dermatology, ophthalmology and biology. Initially I believed AI might need probably the most impact in mammography, so I worked with five different firms in that space. Nevertheless, I ultimately moved away from mammography because I noticed AI had greater potential in dentistry. The most important reason for that is that dentistry has one among the best – if not the best – rates of missed instances of disease. Dentists miss nearly 50% of decay, on average. This will have major implications as missed cavities, abscesses, lesions and oral diseases can evolve into larger problems when untreated. A tool that allows a data-driven approach has immense potential to assist dentists and their patients.

My research and work at MIT led to founding VideaHealth, in addition to two master’s degrees in Electrical Engineering & Computer Science and Technology & Policy.

How did this research then transition into the launch of VideaHealth?

MIT recognized the potential for my research project, which was called Delta V on the time, and provided the primary $50,000 in funding the summer after I graduated. Well before dental AI was commercially viable, I designed the technology encapsulated in Patent no. 11,553,874, which covers dental image feature detection powered by machine learning that helps dentists detect diseases on images and matches those findings to patient records. It’s the critical concept that drives today’s dental AI technologies.

I wrote the primary algorithm for the minimum viable product (MVP) on Nov. 19, 2018, and from there I used to be capable of raise $1.1 million in angel investment. With that, I hired my first team of 5 people, built my MVP to the primary small product, and secured increasing interest from enterprise capital (VC) firms and the dental community. I then raised $5.4 million from Zeta and Pillar, two Boston-based VCs focused on healthcare and early innovation. This allowed me to construct out a bigger team, further develop the platform, submit for and ultimately gain FDA clearance for our medical algorithms and onboard our first customers. We then raised a further $21 million from Spark Capital. It’s incredible to see how far we’ve already include our mission-driven team, amazing clients and visionary partners, including Henry Schein One, the world’s largest software and services company for the dental industry.

One big initial challenge, which is common in medtech, is the dearth of user feedback throughout all of the years of product development. To mitigate this, we included dental practices as pilot programs prior to submitting for FDA clearance, and gathered an infinite amount of user feedback to assist us optimize the platform.

Why does dentistry have one among the best rates of diagnostic errors in healthcare?

This could be largely attributed to dentists having such a wide selection of experience levels and diagnostic capabilities that could be influenced by external aspects akin to equipment quality and room lighting – a lot in order that in lots of cases, 10 different dentists will provide 10 different diagnoses.

The widespread prevalence of dental problems is one other contributing factor. Greater than 90% of American adults have had at the least one cavity and 25% have at the least one currently. More than 3.5 billion people globally suffer from oral disease – 44% of the population – and dentists miss detecting greater than 40% of them.

Most oral issues are asymptomatic, including most gum diseases and periodontal lesions. Subsequently, dentists who aren’t as well equipped are prone to overlook unreported issues that patients don’t learn about, particularly incipient decay, lesions and diseases. For instance, a dentist might concentrate on one side of a patient’s mouth where they’re having a toothache, while missing a more significant problem on the opposite side of their mouth.

While it goes without query that dentists need to be as effective as possible, they’re continuously dividing their time. Dentists are highly specialized, but they essentially have 4 jobs: radiologist, primary care physician, surgeon and practice manager. It’s so much to hold and this constant juggle may give method to instances of oversight.

What are some examples of how AI improves accuracy of diagnosis?

Our AI-powered platform improves diagnostic accuracy by significantly aiding dentists of their evaluation of radiographs and providing predictive evaluation and diagnosis/treatment recommendations in near-real time, based on an algorithm that leverages tons of of tens of millions of information points.

Within the FDA clinical study for our dental caries detection platform, Videa Caries Assist, the platform enabled dentists to cut back the variety of missed caries (cavities) by 43% and reduce the variety of erroneous detections (false positives) of caries lesions by 15%. This aligns closely with the outcomes of our joint study with Heartland Dental, through which the platform helped clinicians detect 46% more caries lesions and reduced errors by 10%.

U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) most recently issued 510(k) clearance for Videa Perio Assist, our AI-powered interproximal bone level measurement tool for periodontal disease assessment. With Videa Perio Assist, dentists and hygienists can easily measure interproximal bone level changes over time for patients 12 and older, leading to faster and more accurate treatment recommendations and improved patient outcomes.

Beyond improving diagnostic accuracy, our AI platform enhances preventative care, which is critical in dentistry. VideaHealth enables dentists to catch decay, abscesses and lesions at their infancy in order that tiny restorations could be made pre-emptively, relatively than more invasive treatments later, like crowns and root canals. For instance, Videa Caries Assist can discover incipient lesions as much as five years before a dentist can on their very own, after which suggest a pre-emptive strike akin to remineralization to strengthen enamel. In cases of existing disease, our technology allows dentists to trace and monitor disease progression with side-by-side image comparison and AI annotation overlay, enhancing a significant step within the clinical diagnosis and treatment process.

What are another ways in which AI could be utilized in dentistry?

AI provides dentists with an objective evaluation and/or validation, together with a reputable, detailed and objective report back to reference when communicating issues to patients. These findings construct a compelling visual presentation that improves communication, trust and accountability,   strengthening the general patient-dentist relationship. Improvements in trust and understanding directly correlate with more patients accepting treatment plan recommendations which helps enable higher outcomes for the patient and bolsters dental practice profitability.

Along with improving diagnostic accuracy and preventative care, AI could be used to customize crowns, bridges and implants far more quickly and accurately than traditional procedures.

Ultimately, by leveraging algorithms, analytics and health data, dental AI like VideaHealth’s not only improves patient care and experience but in addition unlocks health and economic value across the dental value chain – making dentistry more transparent for dentists, insurers and patients.

Could you share some details on the datasets that were used to coach the algorithms which might be used at VideaHealth?

Our AI algorithms leverage the VideaFactory, the industry’s most diverse dataset, which incorporates over 100 million data points from leading dental service organizations (DSOs), hospitals, insurance firms, clearinghouses and universities. For context, the 100 million data points represent roughly 50 times more X-rays than a single dentist sees of their entire lifetime. Intentionally aggregating data from a wide selection of other sources helps us make sure that our algorithms remain impartial, accurate and representative of the range of the population. We then vetted hundreds of dentists and tapped the highest 5% to annotate X-rays used to coach our AI. These expert dentists label images to discover disease and supply prime quality data to the system, enabling our AI to learn from the most effective “teachers.”

Our algorithms are continually trained by a team of information scientists to make sure accuracy and ongoing optimization. Armed with this information, the VideaFactory produces extremely accurate models that may discover and measure clinical indicators on dental X-rays with ease.

What are a few of the reasons that AI has not been more widely adopted by the dental industry?

Dentistry is a highly specialized sector, and due to this fact relies on unique data points to supply effective service to patients. But it surely’s extremely difficult to construct a sufficient database due to fractured nature of most dental practices. The overwhelming majority of dental practices are independently owned and operated, which makes data collection and evaluation very difficult, especially at the dimensions needed to attract accurate conclusions. Despite this improving somewhat in recent times with the rise in DSOs and greater consolidation inside the insurance industry, there has still been minimal progress overall in capturing broad dental data sets, that are largely subject to strict data privacy and protection laws.

Why do you suspect the AI revolution will probably be led by dentistry?

I actually consider AI can have the most important impact in dentistry. The industry has billions of patients worldwide and over a billion X-rays taken a 12 months. In terms of detecting some of the prevalent health conditions on the planet, dental caries (cavities), our FDA study demonstrated our AI helps reduce the variety of caries missed by dentists by greater than 40%*, which has tremendous implications.

The variety of missed instances of disease is even greater for certain use cases. Infections of root suggestions, which require root canal as a primary treatment, are missed 50% of the time by dentists. 50% are false negatives and 30% are false positives. That’s mind-boggling. There’s clearly an enormous problem here and AI can solve it.

The advantages of AI also extend across the industry: patients recover treatment faster and reap greater value from their treatment plans, while dentists streamline their operations and payments, and insurers reduce fraud and improve claims processing efficiency. It’s a win-win-win!

Private equity can be extremely strong in dentistry, which is why I feel dentistry will overtake healthcare by way of AI adoption. It doesn’t depend on complex hospital systems, but relatively private-equity-backed dental practices and streamlining software. And AI could be deployed across tons of of offices directly!

What are a few of the solutions which might be offered at VideaHealth?

Our AI suite includes components that assist with charting, diagnosing, treatment planning and practice management:

1. Videa Assist

  • Helps dental clinicians detect more diseases, faster with objective evaluation.
  • Includes Videa Caries Assist – FDA-cleared AI caries detection tool.
  • Reduces false positives by 15% and improves diagnostic accuracy of 100% of clinicians who use the technology, no matter years of experience.*
  • Improves patient communication, constructing patient trust and increasing case acceptance rates.
  • Videa Assist supports organic growth by increasing the treatment plan value by a median of 26% across all practices, effectively scaling business with higher efficiencies and faster reimbursements

2. Videa Insights

  • Helps DSOs manage and grow practices with actionable insights.
  • Improves quality assurance and training for clinical staff.
  • Provides data to support better-informed practice acquisition decisions

Is there the rest that you prefer to to share about VideaHealth?

Our mission is to assist tens of millions of patients receive more accurate, effective and transparent dental care – and we’re enthusiastic about it becoming increasingly clear to them what has already been known within the medical and dental communities for a very long time: oral and medical health are inextricably linked and dental care directly impacts health in the remaining of the body.

Meanwhile, we’re honored to higher equip dentists, who’re expected to wear many hats – diagnostician, surgeon, primary care physician and specialist – with something that’s untenable without using advanced technologies like AI. With the best use of AI, dentists can manage all these specialized roles and realize incredible efficiency gains while still delivering superior care.

*Based on results from the FDA clinical study of Videa Caries Assist.



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