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Semantic Pre-processing for Complexity Reduction in Parsing Medical Texts

Proceedings of the 21th Conference on the European Federation for Medical Informatics (MIE 2008)
Year of publication: 
Conference poster

Collection and multilayer annotation of textual corpora in specialized fields, such as (bio-) medicine is an important enterprise for empirically-based, data-driven language processing, human language technologies and linguistic research. One of the most important and difficult to achieve piece of annotation that can be made available is at the syntactic and functional level, i.e. parsing, particularly in sublanguages where specialized tools have to be adapted which is considered too expensive for many applications. In this paper, we describe a way to reduce the complexity of parsing in medical discourse by the use of a semantic pre-processing stage guided by annotations provided by medical thesauri and other domain-specific lexical resources. Parsing biomedical texts, apart from the challenge it possesses (deviant and idiosyncratic uses of vocabulary and syntax), is required in order to support and improve technologies such as Information Extraction and Retrieval, enhance the acquisition of relations between terminology support terminology management and population of medical semantic resources.

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