June 7, 2011 | Vas Vasiliadis

Natural Language Processing (NLP) has the potential to dramatically influence the way in which clinical care and medical research is conducted. Pilot studies have shown that NLP engines, such as MedLEE and MetaMap, and the use of community-defined medical ontologies like the Unified Medical Language System (UMLS), can help to more accurately identify disease risks and environmental factors in patient clinical narratives. In addition to helping improve disease diagnosis, NLP can help automate the analysis of patient narratives over extended visits and across a wide sampling of subjects.