Diagnosis based on remote ultrasound will soon be available

By Cécilia Carron

An ultrasound machine has been transformed into a telediagnosis tool. Specialists in other hospitals can see images in real time, pinpoint the exact zone they’re coming from, and interact.

Making a diagnosis using ultrasound often requires advice from experts in other hospitals, particularly in neurology. Sonography is one of the most commonly used imaging techniques. But to make an interpretation, a doctor must have access to the and know exactly where the is placed on the patient. This has been an obstacle to remote diagnostics, one that will soon be overcome. A remote , developed by French-Swiss teams of researchers and two start-up companies, allows the specialist see the image taken by the transducer as well as its position, all in . The doctor can also indicate the exact area that he or she would like to see with the cursor. The technician who is with the patient then moves the transducer.

This video is not supported by your browser at this time.

This equipment, developed by a team led by Professor Jean-Philippe Thiran from EPFL’s Signal Processing Laboratory, has been adapted to work on traditional ultrasound machines. A small motion detector the size of a cherry is attached underneath the transducer. A optical feedback system consisting of two infrared cameras, developed by Atracsys, an EPFL start-up headquartered in Le Mont-sur-Lausanne, films the transducer, and a software program displays it in color on a virtual human on the screen. The corresponding ultrasound images are displayed in parallel. The specialist can thus interact with the image and ask the on-site team to move the transducer to precise points. Using software developed by Thiran’s team, the specialist indicates the zone to observe on the patient with a movement of the mouse. Already tested at the Lausanne University (CHUV) and the CHU in Besançon, the device has been integrated into a telediagnosis platform being developed by Covalia, a project partner company based in Besançon, and will be commercially available within a few months.

“Medical imaging is currently very quantitatively oriented, for example, to highlight brain structures, and measure and compare them,” explains Thiran. The same research team has developed another remote diagnosis tool, a server for analyzing medical imaging data. The images are sent securely via a network and can be analyzed in various ways – by slice, in 3D, with color contrast, etc. Doctors who are tens of kilometers away from each other can share the images and discuss results.

Provided by Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne

not rated yet
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Computer model improves ultrasound image

Nov 04, 2008

Doctors use diagnostic sonography or ultrasound to visualise organs and other internal structures of the human body. Dutch researcher Koos Huijssen has developed a computer model that can predict the sound transmission of ...

First steps toward autonomous robot surgeries

May 06, 2008

The day may be getting a little closer when robots will perform surgery on patients in dangerous situations or in remote locations, such as on the battlefield or in space, with minimal human guidance.

New Brain Helmet Could Detect Stroke Earlier

Feb 09, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- A prototype "brain helmet" that provides real-time images of major blood vessels may enable emergency personnel to perform quick scans of potential stroke victims' brains, according to a team ...

Bedside ultrasound becomes a reality

Feb 23, 2011

Clinicians have often referred to ultrasound technology as the "stethoscope of the future," predicting that as the equipment shrinks in size, it will one day be as common at the bedside as that trusty tool around every physician's ...

Tiny 3-D ultrasound probe guides catheter procedures

Aug 28, 2008

An ultrasound probe small enough to ride along at the tip of a catheter can provide physicians with clearer real-time images of soft tissue without the risks associated with conventional x-ray catheter guidance.

Recommended for you

Student seeks to improve pneumonia vaccines

7 hours ago

Almost a million Americans fall ill with pneumonia each year. Nearly half of these cases require hospitalization, and 5-7 percent are fatal. Current vaccines provide protection against some strains of the ...

Seabed solution for cold sores

8 hours ago

The blue blood of abalone, a seabed delicacy could be used to combat common cold sores and related herpes virus following breakthrough research at the University of Sydney.

Better living through mitochondrial derived vesicles

Aug 19, 2014

(Medical Xpress)—As principal transformers of bacteria, organelles, synapses, and cells, vesicles might be said to be the stuff of life. One need look no further than the rapid rise to prominence of The ...

Zebrafish help to unravel Alzheimer's disease

Aug 19, 2014

New fundamental knowledge about the regulation of stem cells in the nerve tissue of zebrafish embryos results in surprising insights into neurodegenerative disease processes in the human brain. A new study by scientists at ...

User comments