The emergence of artificial intelligence (AI) in health care is reshaping the way medical providers diagnose and treat patients. The 13th annual Delta Dental Oral Health Endowed Lecture at the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine will explore one way that AI is coming to dentistry and medicine.

Glenn Thomas Clark, professor and associate dean of distance education at the Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry at the University of Southern California (USC), will provide a glimpse into how an algorithm assisted medical clinical decision support system is being used in to assist clinicians as they attempt to diagnose the common and uncommon problems seen in orofacial pain.

  • What: Delta Dental Oral Health Endowed Lecture at the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine
  • Topic: "How can AI Make Us Better Diagnosticians?"
  • When: 6 p.m. reception; 7 p.m. lecture on Jan. 3
  • Where: Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine, 2 Riverside Circle, Roanoke
  • Registration: This event is free and open to the public and will be offered virtually and in-person. Registration required.

Clark will demonstrate an algorithm-assisted clinical decision support system that helps medical and dental providers identify high-risk patients that might progress to chronic disability pain. Finding these high-risk patients and getting a correct diagnosis and treatment plan for them would be important as dentistry considers value-based contracts with Medicare and Medicaid.

Glenn Thomas Clark headshot
Glenn Thomas Clark

Clark will then demonstrate an algorithm-enhanced clinical decision support system web app currently used at USC to assist dental clinicians with the diagnosis of a number of conditions. He will focus on the area of dental practice described as orofacial pain and oral medicine, which is the diagnosis and management of complex pain and dysfunction associated with the head, face, jaw joints, mouth, and neck.

“Efficient diagnosis requires obtaining accurate data. This process could be aided by applying algorithms to patient data as it is collected,” Clark said. “Receiving an actual rank-ordered list of potential diagnoses to consider and a suggested list of next data to collect as you enter patient findings into the electronic medical record is quite innovative.”

Clark is president-elect of the American Board of Orofacial Pain. He has conducted extensive research in temporomandibular disorders and trigeminal motor function and served as principal investigator on several National Institute for Dental Research grants. He has authored more than 200 scholarly articles, papers and chapters, has served as editor or co-editor of five books, and has received numerous professional accolades.

The event is free for Carilion Clinic Physicians and the public and will be offered virtually and in person. Registration is required. 

This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas and Policies of the Medical Society of Virginia through the joint providership of Carilion Clinic’s CME Program, Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine, and Delta Dental of Virginia Foundation. Carilion Clinic’s CME Program is accredited by the Medical Society of Virginia to provide continuing medical education for physicians. Carilion Clinic’s CME Program designates this live activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™.  Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Identification and mitigation of disclosure of financial relationships

The Planning Committee members, Charles Conklin Jr., DDS; Jennifer Cleveland, PharmD; Josh Meyer; and Alicia Besenyei reported no relevant relationships/affiliations with any entity producing, marketing, re-selling or distributing health care goods or services consumed by, or used on patients.

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