The POSCH Study is a recently completed national multiclinic clinical trial (Buchwald et al.,1990). POSCH collected about 1400 variables at each annual visit on 838 participants, producing a database of about 300-million characters. The size inspired the use of innovative ways to automate the analyses (Long, 1987; Long at al., Long et al., 1991a). We previously reported the development of two expert systems that automate certain steps of data analyses not previously possible because they required clinical judgment (Slage at al., 1986a; Long et al., 1988a; Long et al., 1987; Long et al., 1991b;). This report is an expanded and updated of our experience implementing these systems into our day-to-day operations (Long et al., 1988b). Issues discussed include hardware selection, use of LISP versus FORTRAN, other software considerations, statistical concerns, database access and several other mundane issues, the resolution of which were essential to the actual use of these expert systems.
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The first of the two systems that we are subsequently implementing for mass production work compares the patient's change in performance on a graded exercise ECG (electrocardiographic) test taken one or more years apart (Slagle et al., 1986a; Long et al., 1987). This system is called ETA (Exercise Test Analyzer). The second system analyzes change in the condition Revised version of Long, J. M., Slagle, J. R., Matts, J. P., & the POSCH Group, The POSCH experiencei mplementinge xpert systems into its ongoing data analyses, pp. 262-290, from Liebowitz: Expert Systems World Congress Proceedings, copyright 199 !, with permission from Pergamon Press Ltd., Headington Hill Hall, Oxford, OX3 0BW, United Kingdom. POSCH stands for Program on the Surgical Control of the Hyperlipidemias. See Appendix A for members of the POSCH Group. It is funded by NHLB1 under Grant HL115265. The POSCH AI Project is an effort to find more efficient and cost effective ways to process the POSCH Study data. Requests for reprints should be sent to John M. Long, University of Minnesota, Box 290UMHC, 420 Delaware St. S.E., Minneapolis, MN 55455.