Bedside testing device for University Hospital Southampton

Mobile technology allows clinicians to perform crucial eye tests on young patients without the added time and stress of attending a specialist appointment


Southampton clinicians are among the first in the UK to trial a mobile testing device that allows them to perform important eye tests on young patients.

The hand-sized RETIVAL can be used to test children at their bedside rather than requiring them to go to a specialist laboratory for examination.

Jay Self, a consultant paediatric ophthalmologist at University Hospital Southampton, told OT that technology allowed clinicians to provide vision checks as quickly and easily as possible. 

“This new technology not only takes the pressure off our laboratory but also allows us to pick up potential damage to a child’s sight quickly and intervene,” he highlighted. 

“We see cases where children have gone from having good vision to losing their sight completely over a matter of weeks and yet, because of the complexity of the current lab, our waiting list can be as long as seven months for this test,” Mr Self added. 

The £8000 device was purchased through the Lahna Appeal – a fund set up in memory of five-month-old Lahna Tula Beatty, who died suddenly from a viral condition that led to heart failure.

Her mother, Natasha Beatty said: “Lahna would have been eight years old now and we have been fundraising in her memory since 2009, something we are extremely proud of.”