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Glaucoma test on a smartphone

A UK company envisions a headset and smartphone app could one day monitor glaucoma from patients’ homes

Viewi smartphone technology

Forget long journeys to hospital and near-endless waiting, patients with glaucoma may soon have their condition monitored in the comfort of their own home.

Cambridge Consultants have designed a prototype for such a system, based on a portable headset, a wireless remote control, a smartphone and an app.

In a user-friendly set-up, the smartphone slots into the headset and, at the push of the one-button wireless controller, the app will run a reproduction of a hospital static perimetry test.

According to Cambridge Consultants, the Viewi test will take five minutes per eye with the patient clicking the remote control every time they see a flashing dot.

The results can then be immediately sent to the patient’s ophthalmologist or optometrist for analysis and any follow-up consultation required, the company said.

The company believes that the complete system – apart from the smartphone – could cost just £20, thousands of times cheaper than today’s clinical-grade machines.

Cambridge Consultants head of surgical and interventional products, Simon Karger, told OT that the Viewi system has been designed to augment the other screening methods for glaucoma.

He added that: “The Viewi system has been developed with deep input from ophthalmologists and glaucoma specialists, and in line with the requirements that define the current clinical test systems. However, our intent at this time to demonstrate the technology and explore how relatively simple approaches can be used to revolutionise patient care.

“As it is not a clinical product, it has not been clinically tested on patients at this time,” Mr Karger explained.

The device would need support from a specialist device company to progress from the prototype stage into a product ready for the market, he highlighted.