An Indian-origin scientist has helped invent a camera which can change the way doctors conduct internal examinations. Kev Dhaliwal, Professor of Molecular Imaging and Healthcare Technology at the University of Edinburgh, has successfully led a team to create a medical camera that is capable of seeing through the human body. Yes, you read that right. The camera can actually see through a human body.
The inventors are hopeful that their invention holds immense potential for doctors in tracking of internal examinations. The camera will help in keep a tracking of medical tools, known as endoscopes, that are used to detect a number of internal conditions during internal examinations.
The camera invented by the team functions by detecting light sources inside the body, such as the illuminated tip of the endoscope’s long flexible tube.
Until the invention, doctors had to depend on expensive scans, such as X-rays, to trace the progress trajectory of these internal examinations.
While light from the endoscope is capable of passing through the human body, it ends up scattering or bouncing off the organs and tissues rather than going straight through. This ends up making it quite difficult to get a clean shot of endoscope’s whereabouts.
The camera that the team has invented capitalizes on the advanced technology that is capable of detecting individual particles of light, called photons. In fact, the camera is so sensitive that it can even catch the tiny traces of light passing through tissue. Not only this, it is can also record the time taken for light to pass through the human body, allowing the device to also detect the scattered light.
The project, which is being led by the University of Edinburgh and Heriot-Watt University, is officially a part of the Proteus Interdisciplinary Research Collaboration, which is currently engrossed into developing a wide range of new technologies for diagnosing and treating lung diseases. Proteus is being funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council and the latest research has already found a place in the esteemed journal ‘Biomedical Optics Express’.
According to the scientists, they wanted to make a camera that can be easily used at a patient’s bedside, and they’re happy they could achieve the same.
According to Dhaliwal, Project Lead of Proteus, their invention offers diverse applications. He said, “It has immense potential for diverse applications, such as the one described in this work. The ability to see a device’s location is crucial for many applications in healthcare, as we move forwards with minimally invasive approaches to treating disease.”