Deep inverse reinforcement learning for sepsis treatment

Chao Yu, Guoqi Ren, Jiming LIU

Research output: Chapter in book/report/conference proceedingConference proceedingpeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


Sepsis is a leading cause of mortality in hospitals, but its optimal treatment strategy still remains unclear. Recent years have witnessed several successful applications of Reinforcement Learning (RL) approaches in sepsis treatment, achieving far more efficient strategies than those by clinicians. To ensure such applications, an explicit reward function encoding medical domain knowledge should be specified beforehand to indicate the goal of learning. However, due to the paucity of clear understanding of sepsis itself, there is still considerable inconsistency in the formulation of reward functions for sepsis treatment. In this poster, we address the reward learning problem in RL for treatment of sepsis, which has been largely neglected by previous studies. A deep inverse RL with Mini-Tree (DIRL-MT) model is proposed to infer the best reward functions from a set of presumably optimal treatment trajectories using retrospective real medical data. In the model, the MT component learns the factors that are most important in influencing the mortality during sepsis treatment, while the DIRL component infers the complete reward function in terms of weights of those factors. Our work shows that PaO2 and PT can play a vital role and should be paid more attention in the design of more efficient treatment strategies for sepsis in the future.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2019 IEEE International Conference on Healthcare Informatics, ICHI 2019
ISBN (Electronic)9781538691380
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2019
Event7th IEEE International Conference on Healthcare Informatics, ICHI 2019 - Xi'an, China
Duration: 10 Jun 201913 Jun 2019

Publication series

Name2019 IEEE International Conference on Healthcare Informatics, ICHI 2019


Conference7th IEEE International Conference on Healthcare Informatics, ICHI 2019

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Health Informatics
  • Biomedical Engineering

User-Defined Keywords

  • Deep Learning
  • Intravenous
  • Inverse Learning
  • Reinforcement Learning
  • Sepsis
  • Vasopressor


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