A Machine Learning Framework for Predicting Dementia and Mild Cognitive Impairment

Daniel Stamate, Wajdi Alghambdi, Jeremy Ogg, Richard Hoile, Fionn Murtagh

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Dementia is one of the most feared illnesses that has a growing year-to-year negative global impact, having a health and social care cost higher than cancer, stroke and chronic heart disease, taken together. Without the availability of a cure, nor a standardised clinical test, the utilisation of machine learning methods to identify individuals that are at risk of developing dementia could bring a new step towards proactive intervention. This study's goal is to carry out a precursor analysis leading to building classification models with enhanced capabilities for differentiating diagnoses of CN (Cognitively Normal), MCI (Mild Cognitive Impairment) and Dementia. The predictive modelling approach we propose is based on the ReliefF method combined with statistical permutation tests for feature selection, and on model training, tuning, and testing based on algorithms such as Random Forests, Support Vector Machines, Gaussian Processes, Stochastic Gradient Boosting, and eXtreme Gradient Boosting. Stability of model performances were studied in computationally intensive Monte Carlo simulations. The results consistently show that our models accurately detect dementia, and also mild cognitive impairment patients by only using the inclusion of baseline measurements as predictors, thus illustrating the importance of baseline measurements. The best results issued from Monte Carlo were achieved by eXtreme Gradient Boosting optimised models, with an accuracy of 0.88 (SD 0.02), a sensitivity of 0.93 (SD 0.02) and a specificity of 0.94 (SD 0.01) for dementia, and a sensitivity of 0.86 (SD 0.02) and a specificity of 0.9 (SD 0.02) for mild cognitive impairment. These results support in particular future developments for a risk-based method that can identify an individual's risk of developing dementia.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings - 17th IEEE International Conference on Machine Learning and Applications, ICMLA 2018
EditorsM. Arif Wani, Mehmed Kantardzic, Moamar Sayed-Mouchaweh, Joao Gama, Edwin Lughofer
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781538668054
ISBN (Print)9781538668061
Publication statusPublished - 17 Jan 2019
Event17th IEEE International Conference on Machine Learning and Applications - Orlando, United States
Duration: 17 Dec 201820 Dec 2018
Conference number: 17


Conference17th IEEE International Conference on Machine Learning and Applications
Abbreviated titleICMLA 2018
Country/TerritoryUnited States


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