With the proliferation of digital communication in healthcare, the reuse of laboratory test data entails valuable insights into clinical and scientific issues, basically enabled by semantic standardization using the LOINC coding system. In order to extend the currently limited potential for analysis, which is mainly caused by structural peculiarities of LOINC, an algorithmic transformation of relevant content into an OWL ontology was performed, which includes LOINC Terms, Parts and Hierarchies. For extending analysis capabilities, the comprehensive SNOMED CT ontology is added by transferring its contents and the recently published LOINC-related mapping data into OWL ontologies.
These formalizations offer rich, computer-processable content and allow to infer additional structures and relationships, especially when used together. Consequently, various reutilizations are facilitated; an application demonstrating the dynamic visualization of fractional hierarchy structures for user-supplied laboratory data was already implemented. By providing element-wise aggregation via superclasses, an adaptable, graph representation is obtained for studying categorizations.
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