Emergency departments in many hospitals often deal with ophthalmological problems, many of which affect the posterior pole of eyeball, an area which is extremely difficult to access and explore with conventional tools. We generally use a direct ophthalmoscope, a classic tool but one which has limitations that may complicate decision-making and cause diagnostic delays and unnecessary referrals to ophthalmologists.
It was clear that if I could capture images of the back of the eye of such patients and send them to ophthalmologists for evaluation, the healthcare quality provided would be better. This was how I had the idea of using the camera of my smartphone to take these images, and in collaboration with the hospital Emergency and Ophthalmology departments, devised the Open Retinoscope. This is a portable, easy to use, low-cost device which enables validated images to be captured of the posterior pole of a patient’s eye. These can subsequently be evaluated by or shared with ophthalmologists if necessary, offering greater quality and field of vision than obtained by conventional tools.