DeepStroke: An efficient stroke screening framework for emergency rooms with multimodal adversarial deep learning

Tongan Cai, Haomiao Ni, Mingli Yu, Xiaolei Huang, Kelvin Wong, John Volpi, James Z. Wang, Stephen T.C. Wong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


In an emergency room (ER) setting, stroke triage or screening is a common challenge. A quick CT is usually done instead of MRI due to MRI's slow throughput and high cost. Clinical tests are commonly referred to during the process, but the misdiagnosis rate remains high. We propose a novel multimodal deep learning framework, DeepStroke, to achieve computer-aided stroke presence assessment by recognizing patterns of minor facial muscles incoordination and speech inability for patients with suspicion of stroke in an acute setting. Our proposed DeepStroke takes one-minute facial video data and audio data readily available during stroke triage for local facial paralysis detection and global speech disorder analysis. Transfer learning was adopted to reduce face-attribute biases and improve generalizability. We leverage a multi-modal lateral fusion to combine the low- and high-level features and provide mutual regularization for joint training. Novel adversarial training is introduced to obtain identity-free and stroke-discriminative features. Experiments on our video-audio dataset with actual ER patients show that DeepStroke outperforms state-of-the-art models and achieves better performance than both a triage team and ER doctors, attaining a 10.94% higher sensitivity and maintaining 7.37% higher accuracy than traditional stroke triage when specificity is aligned. Meanwhile, each assessment can be completed in less than six minutes, demonstrating the framework's great potential for clinical translation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number102522
JournalMedical Image Analysis
StatePublished - Aug 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Health Informatics
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design


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