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In this paper a fuzzy inference system (FIS) is presented to predict the level of risk for a class of patients to be needing a repeated surgery for the herniated lumber disc (or more commonly known as slipped disc). The FIS is based upon a clinical study that was conducted by a number of doctors at Aga Khan University Hospital in Pakistan with the objective that certain clinical measures can be used from the beginning to assist the physician in making a better risk estimate for the patient at hand. As such, over 90 clinical markers were collected through patients' surveys over a period of 5 years (2000-2004). The presented study utilizes a subset of 16 markers and has recommendation for 7 of these markers for a reasonably accurate risk prediction. A set of 11 rules has been established that constitute the mapped understanding from the physicians' heuristics. Such a system will be a very helpful tool for medical professionals for making quick risk assessment for a patient and will enable them to more accurately define the treatment for the same.
Date of Conference: 24-27 Nov. 2007