The new smartphone app may be able to get a sense of how their condition has progressed  and could help people mange their eye disease. However this is not to replace your yearly dilated eye exam and examination by an eye care professional.-MDA

By Adam Hochron | October 23, 2014

Patients diagnosed with diabetic retinopathy may be able to get a sense of how their condition has progressed without having to leave the comfort of their own home.

At its annual conference in Chicago the America Academy of Opthalmologists announced a new smartphone app which could help measure and grade the severity of the disease.

“The results of the research indicate the lower-cost method could be used for bringing the service to patients in isolated or underserved communities,” the Academy said in a statement. Diabetic retinopathy affects approximately 7.7 million people in the United States, according to the statement.

The cause for most cases is elevated blood sugar, which can eventually lead to partial vision loss and eventually total blindness. Patients are currently tested in a doctor’s office with a retinal slit-lamp biomicroscopy. While the test can determine a person’s visual condition the statement said it is not always easy for patients to get the treatment they need.

“This kind of examination requires a large piece of specialized equipment found only in clinical settings, posing a significant challenge for monitoring patients living in rural or low-resource communities,” the statement noted.

The technology for the new test was developed by researchers from the Universities of Brescia, Molise, and “Federico II.” As part of their work, the team created a “small optical adapter” called a D-Eye, which would attach to a patient’s iPhone5 making a virtual ophthalmoscope. –

 

See more at: http://www.hcplive.com/articles/Smartphone-App-Could-Double-as-Ophthalmology-Tool#sthash.lxHyiQk0.dpuf

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