Analytics company GlobalData has identified three highlights from the "digital health in ophthalmology" market from 2017:
Smart contact lens
Researchers at the Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology (UNIST) and Kyungpook National University School of Medicine, both of South Korea, have developed a pioneering contact lens. Successfully demonstrated in rabbits, their smart contact lens can continuously and wirelessly monitor glucose and intraocular pressure, which are the risk factors associated with diabetes and glaucoma, respectively.
Maura Musciacco, MSc, Director of Neurology and Ophthalmology for GlobalData explains, “Glucose levels and intraocular pressure are measured today, but just one measurement at a time in the doctor’s office. In the future, patients and physicians can receive readings of these vital parameters in real-time, potentially resulting in improved diagnosis and health outcomes”.
First in-home vision testing unit
The EyeQue team developed a small optical device and smartphone app (based on an MIT patent) that makes vision assessment possible anywhere. Launched in 2017, it is the first in-home vision testing solution to combine an optical miniscope (the hardware), a smartphone application, and secure cloud-based technology. This forms a low-cost and precise option for people to gather measurements. Thanks to advances in mobile and cloud-based technologies, they have miniaturized what has traditionally been large and costly optical testing equipment.
Musciacco commented, ‘‘People can test their eyesight without getting an appointment from the doctor, track their vision history, and even order corrective glasses from nearby optical shops.’’
Retinal imaging smartphone camera adapter
Peek Vision launched Peek Retina, a smartphone camera adapter for retinal imaging in 2017 to take pictures inside the eye. The device can allow the patient to examine the optic nerve and macula to identify diseases such as glaucoma, cataract, diabetic retinopathy, and age related macular degeneration. The technology can also increase access to eye care by enabling examinations to be carried out anywhere in the world.
Musciacco adds “In addition, images of the back of the eye can be shared with other professionals and can be transferred to electronic patient records.’’