An article published in PhotoBlog states that iPhone apps may become useful in the field of skin cancer diagnosis. For instance, a device called Handyscope turns an iPhone into a dermatoscope, which is used by physicians to differentiate between cancerous and non-cancerous moles. This device can be used by physicians to take close-up images of moles, freckles and other skin abnormalities, and upload images for later viewing and analysis.
How Does This Device Work?
Handyscope contains a set of lenses which can align with the camera of an iPhone 3G, 3GS or 4, using a case in which the phone can slide. This device is pressed against the patient’s skin, and a picture is taken under polarized light. This picture is taken using the standard zoom function of the phone, and can be later magnified up to 20 times for viewing on a PC or other monitor. However, quality of these pictures is not yet known.
Fotofinder, the German-based manufacturer of this device says that the pictures taken are date and time stamped, and can be stored or shared, as the files are encrypted and safe for both storage and transmission.
Uses of the Handyscope
Andreas Mayer, CEO of Fotofinder says that Handyscope can be used by all doctors who want to have the possibility to take pictures of skin and work with them later. This device can be used as an alternative to conventional handheld dermatoscopes which are not equipped with the capture-and- save function. The device itself costs around $1,600 and the application can be purchased for $12 through the iTunes app store.
Dr. Antonella Tosti, who is a dermatologist at the University of Miami, School of Medicine, is one of the doctors who prefesr to use an iPhone as a dermatoscope for diagnosis of skin cancer symptoms. According to her, using an iPhone is easier and more convenient as compared to conventional dermatoscope to analyze pictures of moles or other skin abnormalities, and tell about possible signs of skin cancer.
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