Esophageal cancer, one of the most common cancers with a poor prognosis, is the sixth leading cause of cancer-related mortality worldwide. Early and accurate diagnosis of esophageal cancer, thus, plays a vital role in choosing the appropriate treatment plan for patients and increasing their survival rate. However, an accurate diagnosis of esophageal cancer requires substantial expertise and experience. Nowadays, the deep learning (DL) model for the diagnosis of esophageal cancer has shown promising performance. Therefore, we conducted an updated meta-analysis to determine the diagnostic accuracy of the DL model for the diagnosis of esophageal cancer. A search of PubMed, EMBASE, Scopus, and Web of Science, between 1 January 2012 and 1 August 2022, was conducted to identify potential studies evaluating the diagnostic performance of the DL model for esophageal cancer using endoscopic images. The study was performed in accordance with PRISMA guidelines. Two reviewers independently assessed potential studies for inclusion and extracted data from retrieved studies. Methodological quality was assessed by using the QUADAS-2 guidelines. The pooled accuracy, sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive value, and the area under the receiver operating curve (AUROC) were calculated using a random effect model. A total of 28 potential studies involving a total of 703,006 images were included. The pooled accuracy, sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive value of DL for the diagnosis of esophageal cancer were 92.90%, 93.80%, 91.73%, 93.62%, and 91.97%, respectively. The pooled AUROC of DL for the diagnosis of esophageal cancer was 0.96. Furthermore, there was no publication bias among the studies. The findings of our study show that the DL model has great potential to accurately and quickly diagnose esophageal cancer. However, most studies developed their model using endoscopic data from the Asian population. Therefore, we recommend further validation through studies of other populations as well.

Original languageEnglish
Article number5996
Issue number23
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


  • artificial intelligence
  • automated diagnosis
  • convolutional neural network
  • esophageal cancer
  • gastrointestinal endoscopy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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