Benefit-aware Early Prediction of Health Outcomes on Multivariate EEG Time Series

2021 
Given a cardiac-arrest patient being monitored in the ICU (intensive care unit) for brain activity, how can we predict their health outcomes as early as possible? Early decision-making is critical in many applications, e.g. monitoring patients may assist in early intervention and improved care. On the other hand, early prediction on EEG data poses several challenges: (i) earliness-accuracy trade-off; observing more data often increases accuracy but sacrifices earliness, (ii) large-scale (for training) and streaming (online decision-making) data processing, and (iii) multi-variate (due to multiple electrodes) and multi-length (due to varying length of stay of patients) time series. Motivated by this real-world application, we present BeneFitter that infuses the incurred savings from an early prediction as well as the cost from misclassification into a unified domain-specific target called benefit. Unifying these two quantities allows us to directly estimate a single target (i.e. benefit), and importantly, dictates exactly when to output a prediction: when benefit estimate becomes positive. BeneFitter (a) is efficient and fast, with training time linear in the number of input sequences, and can operate in real-time for decision-making, (b) can handle multi-variate and variable-length time-series, suitable for patient data, and (c) is effective, providing up to 2x time-savings with equal or better accuracy as compared to competitors.
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