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A hierarchy in which each node has one or more parents.

Notes

  • The subtype relationships of SNOMED CT create a polyhierarchical classification.
  • A polyhierarchical classification can be represented as a graph in which each node has a one or more directed links to or from other nodes.
  • A node in a polyhierarchical classification cannot be a descendant of itself, which means the hierarchy must not contain cyclic relationships. This type of hierarchy is therefore known as a directed acyclic graph

Examples

  • The diagram below shows a polyhierarchy. Each node has one or more parent node so there can be multiple paths from a node to the top (or root) of the hierarchy. 
    For example from node V the paths include the following:
    • V→N→F→B→A
    • V→N→F→C→A
    • V→G→C→A 

Figure 1: Hierarchy Illustration - Polyhierarchical Classification


Alternatives

  • Polyhierarchy

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