Learning in dynamic decision making: The usability process
This research effort deals with the application of Artificial Neural Networks (ANNs) in order to help the diagnosis of cases with an orthopaedic disease, namely osteoporosis. Probabilistic Neural Networks (PNNs) and Learning Vector Quantization (LVQ) ANNs, were developed for the estimation of osteoporosis risk. PNNs and LVQ ANNs are both feed-forward networks; however they are diversified in terms of their architecture, structure and optimization approach. The obtained results of successful prognosis over pathological cases lead to the conclusion that in this case the PNNs (96.58%) outperform LVQ (96.03%) networks, thus they provide an effective potential soft computing technique for the evaluation of osteoporosis risk. The ANN with the best performance was used for the contribution assessment of each risk feature towards the prediction of this medical disease. Moreover, the available data underwent statistical processing using the Receiver Operating Characteristic (ROC) analysis in order to determine the most significant factors for the estimation of osteoporosis risk. The results of the PNN model are in accordance with the ROC analysis and identify age as the most significant factor.