Achieving Medical Data Labeling Success with the Assistance of Platforms

VinLab
3 min readMar 24, 2023

Accurate medical data labeling is critical for both healthcare professionals and AI industries, as it helps in the better understanding of diseases, development of effective treatments, and serves as a training dataset for machine learning models used in healthcare applications.

However, this process is not without its challenges, and it can be a difficult and time-consuming task that requires specialized knowledge and expertise. By reading this article, you will explore the challenges with medical data labeling in building high-quality datasets and find out how platforms can help address these issues.

Challenges with Medical Data Labeling and How Platforms Help

The quality of the machine learning outcome based on the accuracy of labeled data. So let’s see these challenges and how platforms can help us streamline this process.

1. Complexity

Medical images, such as X-rays, CT scans, MRI scans, ultrasound images, and pathology images, each have unique characteristics and may require different labeling approaches. For example, labeling an MRI scan requires a different skill set compared to labeling a pathology image. Also, multiple modalities which each require a different labeling approach and three-dimensional medical image, requiring specialized tools and expertise to annotate accurately.

To address the challenge, annotation platform features such as bounding boxes, polygons, and volume segmentation can be employed. Bounding boxes allow for the identification and labeling of specific regions of interest in medical images, while polygons offer greater flexibility in defining complex shapes and contours. Volume segmentation enables the annotation of three-dimensional structures, which is particularly important for complex medical conditions.

From these, this progress more efficient, accurate, and consistent, enhancing the quality and usefulness of the labeled data.

Enhance 2D detection and labeling accuracy through the implementation of optimized bounding boxes on VinLab platform

2. Variability

Another challenge with medical data labeling is variability. Medical data can be highly variable due to individual differences, disease progression, and variations in imaging modalities. This can make labeling difficult, as the labels need to be consistent across different samples.

Platforms can help by providing annotation guidelines and quality control measures to ensure consistency in labeling. Additionally, platforms can leverage machine learning algorithms to automate some of the labeling tasks, which can reduce variability and increase efficiency.

3. Confidentiality

Confidentiality is another significant challenge in medical data labeling. Medical data is highly sensitive and confidential, and access to it is strictly regulated. This can make it difficult to find and recruit qualified labelers.

Platforms can help by providing a secure and compliant platform for labeling, ensuring that only authorized individuals have access to the data. Furthermore, platforms can provide mechanisms for tracking and auditing access to the data, ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements.

4. Access to domain expertise

This is also a challenge in medical data labeling. Medical data requires specialized knowledge and expertise to label accurately, and this expertise may not be readily available.

Platforms can help by providing access to a global network of domain experts, enabling the rapid scaling of labeling resources as needed. By leveraging the expertise of these experts, platforms can ensure high-quality, accurate labeling.

5. Cost

Finally, cost is a significant consideration in medical data labeling. Medical data labeling can be expensive due to the specialized expertise required and by the ways you choose to label data. There are several ways to label data, including:

  • In-house
  • Outsourcing
  • Synthetic labeling
  • Programmatic labeling
  • By machine

Choosing an appropriate data labeling method is crucial for maximizing data quality and optimizing workforce investment.

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VinLab

A Data Platform for Medical AI that enables building high-quality datasets and algorithms with lean process and advanced annotation features.