Dermatology App Recommendations Lack Supporting Evidence

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Dermatology apps lack supporting evidence according to a study from JAMA.
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AI-operated dermatology apps claiming to help consumers diagnose, track or treat skin conditions lack supporting evidence and don’t offer input from clinicians or dermatologists, according to a study published in JAMA Dermatology.

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Researchers from the medical schools at the University of California, Los Angeles, New York University, Washington University and Stanford University, as well as researchers from Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, analyzed 41 English-language dermatology apps available in the Apple and Android stores in November and December 2023, finding that their performance was inconsistent and that none had gained approval from the FDA.

The apps also lacked transparency in algorithm development, data usage and user privacy.

The authors stated, “Although AI dermatology mobile apps hold promise for improving access to care and patient outcomes, in their current state, they may pose harm due to potential risks, lack of consistent validation, and misleading user communication."

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