Case Based Reasoning (CBR) methodology provides means of collecting patients cases and retrieving them following the clinical criteria. By studying previously treated patients with similar backgrounds, the physician can get a better base for deciding on treatment for a current patient and be better prepared for complications that might occur during and after surgery. This could be taken advantage of when there is not enough data for a statistical analysis, but electronic patient records that provide all the relevant information to assure a timely and accurate clinical insight into a patient particular situation.
We have developed and implemented a CBR engine using the Nearest Neighbor algorithm. A patient case is represented as a combination of perioperative variable values and operation reports. Physicians could review a selected number of cases by browsing through the electronic patient record and operational narratives which provides an exhaustive insight into the previously treated cases. An evaluation of the search algorithm suggests a very good functionality.