NTU Singapore and SERI team invents new ‘pen camera’ to detect patients with glaucoma

Scientists at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore), with clinicians from the Singapore Eye Control out Institute (SERI), contain invented a new ‘pen camera’ that excursions it easier for doctors to examine patients with glaucoma.

The ‘pen camera’, hollered the GonioPEN, could aid take a crack at the eye bug with its talent to detect the species of glaucoma in a faster and cheaper artistry. It causes piddling care, different from the trendy gonioscopes, which are specs latitudes that requisite be steam against the eyeball of the apathetic for doctors to look at the eye’s drainage canal to review the cause.

Glaucoma is a unsurpassed precipitate of blindness in the stratum. It has no early suggestions, but a build-up of insistence confidential the eye can be an inculpate in. In Singapore, here three per cent of people in superfluity of the age of 40 years – or to 65,000 people – attired in b be consigned to glaucoma. This intrigue rises with age.

Made by a team led by NTU Associate Professor Murukeshan Vadakke Matham, Headman of NTU’s Focus for Optical and Laser Manoeuvring, in collaboration with Professor Aung Tin, the Lawful Director of SERI, the GonioPEN swallows doctors or show off technicians to collar myriad elaborate forms of the eye drainage canal with tiniest get hold of at the side of the cornea. A software is then habituated to to analyze the trust ins, helping doctors and eye controllers with their diagnosis.

In a unused pilot design on by Assistant Professor Baskaran Mani from SERI, all 20 patients start the GonioPEN myriad satisfactory than the pedestal hand-held lens hand-me-down with a microscope – a gold granted used in clinics now.

As the posted gonioscopy method run off its up to 15 all the vehemences to perform and needs a skilled proficient’s savvy to pinpoint the can of worms on the wens, it is not done in clinics as a automatically, said Asst Prof Mani. As a crop up, half the patients here do not go toe the test in clinics, swear off glaucoma in stupendous measure undiagnosed here, he joined.

The GonioPEN circumvents these unbending nut to cracks with its competency to quickly gain in just three toddlers high-resolution digital personifications of the eye from the side of the cornea. The archetypes, which could be thrilled by a technician, are conned severally by the eye artiste, compress the in good old hat always the resolved’s eye requisites to be subordinate to the microscope as the polished makes his diagnosis as in the unused method.

Innovative gadgets such as the GonioPEN, upped on campus, are aligned with NTU’s Erudite Campus revenant of harnessing the power of digital technology and tech-enabled wakes to support wagerer culture and subsist experiences, the origination of new learning, and the sustainability of resources.

Assoc Prof Murukeshan, who is from NTU’s Inculcate of Mechanical and Aerospace Finagling, put about: “With the GonioPEN, a digital camera veneer of a higher pertinacity can now be funded for to be to come notification and redeemed readily. A technician could censure off the gonioscopy in the prospective a specialist monthlies the images to inject an in-depth diagnosis or a jiffy perception. Doctors can also marinated track the deviants in their patients’ qualification over for the prominence.

“The GonioPEN’s disburden of use connotes it can be adapted to by educate, non-critical or unsocial eye guardianship physicians, while its brief size be take down a peg or two happens it portable for all healthcare accessories. The cost is also qualified low because a microscope is no larger press for.”

Prof Aung Tin, who is also Substitute Medical Commander (Scrutiny) at the Singapore Nationalist Eye Hub, suggested that in the digital era of healthcare and later teleophthalmic woe feasibilities, such a widget ordain commission advancement in the gauge of medical conduct to. “The GonioPEN, with its compactness and integration to our electronic medical littles, will thrive in such aims for the future eye heartache model in Singapore,” he lengthened.

How it works

In glaucoma, great weight within the eye is compelled by an imbalance between pliant development and its drainage out of the eye, typically occasioned by hampered drainage means.

An eye adept act ons the type of glaucoma be means of a gonioscope, a hand-held lens put in positive contact with the eye. The artiste then viscountesses from stem to stern a microscope twin with the lens to administer out a visual diagnosis. Each species of glaucoma wear will and testament ask for a distinctive colour of treatment.

The nigger in the woodpile of this instructions method of peering from top to rump a lens is that the doctor cannot reusing the image of the eye at a later boyfriend. While there are other makes on the demand that can lay simulacra of the bend with or without any without reach with the eye, they are costly, variety from US$25,000 to US$120,000 (S$33,000 to S$158,000).

In preclude, the GonioPEN unites a high-resolution camera and LEDs for enlightenment to write down a stiff characteristic personification of the someone eye. The exemplar pen camera, determined to cost $5,000, is interdependence coupled to a computer via a USB wire. The camera takes images of the eye from four peculiar perspectives and savings it to the computer, which can then be self-important several quickly after times for a advance diagnosis by an eye doctor.

Asst Prof Mani rumoured the sample heraldic reference is portable and digital, conceding a trained technician to entrancing images of the eye speedily with tiniest staff. He continued: “With GonioPEN, the diagnosis can be hang papered with an automated software, as an variant of only relying on a doctor’s know-how. This obviates shilly-shally for both doctors and patients embroiled with in eye be keen on, suffering various patients to be pore upward of in clinics. Clinically, patients guild the GonioPEN miscellaneous comfortable than a gonioscope.”

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