Last year we reviewed the D-EYE digital ophthalmoscope, an attachment for iPhones that rivals traditional devices in size, cost, and ease of use. We were very impressed by how little skill is needed to view the vasculature and the optic disc, even being able to do a self exam on an undilated eye. Now a study out of Italy published in the Journal of Glaucoma has shown that the D-EYE is comparable to slit-lamp indirect biomicroscopy for evaluating vertical cup-to-disc ratios (VCDRs), a way of diagnosing glaucoma.
While there were some differences in the results produced by two expert glaucoma specialists using the two kinds of devices, it certainly points to the idea that smartphone-based technology can be used for eye screening, particularly in poorer areas of the world.
From the study abstract in Journal of Glaucoma:
Results: The differences between the mean VCDR estimations obtained by each techniques were not statistically significant. Overall exact agreement between the 2 modalities was found in 21 of 29 eyes (72.4%; simple κ=0.63, confidence interval, 0.52-0.73, P<0.001) in POAG patients and in 52 of 78 eyes (66.7%) in OH patients. The optic nerve head was not gradable with smartphone ophthalmoscopy in 1 eye with POAG and in 2 eyes with OH because of media opacities and/or small pupil diameter.
Conclusions: Smartphone ophthalmoscopy showed substantial agreement with slit-lamp examination for the estimation of the VCDR. The ubiquitous diffusion of the smartphones, together with their connectivity and portability features, enables an extensive benefit for this technology to be used in glaucoma screening, especially in low-resource settings.
Study in Journal of Glaucoma: Comparison of Smartphone Ophthalmoscopy With Slit-Lamp Biomicroscopy for Grading Vertical Cup-to-Disc Ratio…
Product page: D-EYE Digital Ophthalmoscope…