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Smart Phones Could be Used as Field Microscopes Demonstrates a Toronto Doctor

by Raja Nandhini on March 13, 2013 at 7:23 AM
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 Smart Phones Could be Used as Field Microscopes Demonstrates a Toronto Doctor

A Toronto doctor, Isaac I. Bogoch, MD, from the Divisions of Internal Medicine and Infectious Diseases, Toronto General Hospital, has found a new use for smart phones in healthcare.

Dr.Isaac I. Bogoch has converted his Apple iPhone 4S into a field microscope using a small ball lens, which costs around $8. Combined with the lens, phone camera can magnify the object nearly 50 times.

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Bogoch and his colleagues put the set up to test in detecting intestinal worms in children of rural Tanzania. They used it as a part of larger clinical trial, which is aimed at improving diagnosis and treatment of intestinal infections.

Researchers examined the stool samples of 199 children. The samples were kept on a microscope slide, covered with cellophane and then attached to iPhone using tapes. Flash light was used to illuminate the slide.
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With this set up, researchers were able to detect 70% of the worm infections compared to the 87% accuracy of conventional microscope.

The scientists are fine-tuning the design to achieve a detection rate of 80%.

"The ultimate goal is ensuring that people have appropriate quality of care regardless of where they live and regardless of their socio-economic status," says Bogoch.

The findings are published in the American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.

Source: Medindia
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