The medical history of a patient is an essential piece of information in healthcare agencies, which keep records of patients. Due to the fact that each person may have different medical complications, healthcare data remain sparse, high-dimensional and possibly inconsistent. The knowledge discovery from such data is not easily manageable for patient behaviors. It becomes a challenge for both physicians and healthcare agencies to discover knowledge from many healthcare electronic records. Data mining, as evidenced from the existing published literature, has proven its effectiveness in transforming large data collections into meaningful information and knowledge. This paper proposes an overview of the data mining techniques used for knowledge discovery in medical records. Furthermore, based on real healthcare data, this paper also demonstrates a case study of discovering knowledge with the help of three data mining techniques: (1) association analysis; (2) sequential pattern mining; (3) clustering. Particularly, association analysis is used to extract frequent correlations among examinations done by patients with a specific disease, sequential pattern mining allows extracting frequent patterns of medical events and clustering is used to find groups of similar patients. The discovered knowledge may enrich healthcare guidelines, improve their processes and detect anomalous patients’ behavior with respect to the medical guidelines.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.