4th November 2020: A Selfie A Day Keeps the Doctor Away: The Future of Image Processing
Read The New Healthcare Student’s full article here: A Selfie A Day Keeps the Doctor Away: The Future of Image Processing
“…new imaging techniques are taking things one step further to evaluate what is happing below the surface, all with just a selfie.
The main principle that underpins such advancement is relatively simple – skin is translucent and can reemit light at varying levels depending on what lies underneath. Perhaps the most common application of this is in pulse oximetry, where a sensor (typically applied to the finger or earlobe) can calculate peripheral oxygen saturation, as well as heart rate and blood pressure, based on how much light reaches an optical sensor. The scientific name for this is photo-plethysmography (PPG), and while incredibly useful, it is not ideal for all scenarios. Primarily, PPG still requires a patient to be in the same room as a clinician and to keep the sensor attached to their person at all times – this is not always possible, particularly with agitated patients.
Video plethysmography (VPPG) however, aims to solve many of these problems and is the key to exploring exactly how a selfie can determine vital signs. VPPG measures the same cardiac signals as PPG (pulse, blood pressure, oxygen saturation) but, it relies on measuring visible light rather than the low-intensity infrared light used in traditional PPG. AI then filters the reflected light as captured in an image, to detect cardiovascular changes that are otherwise invisible to the human eye. It is a method that can be used on any large, open area of skin, though the face is most popular due to its accessibility.
The fact that VPPG relies on the visible light spectrum is where the practical applications arise, as no equipment is needed other than a standard mobile phone or tablet. Thus, patients and clinicians can utilise the tools already available to them, which reduces healthcare costs, improves healthcare access, and increases patient engagement. Lifelight, a UK based company implementing VPPG throughout select NHS trusts, also claims that VPPG technology reduces the time for a GP to complete vital signs observations from three minutes to just one…”
Read the full article: A Selfie A Day Keeps the Doctor Away: The Future of Image Processing
Source: The New Healthcare Student – Author – Lauren Ketteridge