iPad Based Real-Time Wireless Image Capturing and Tele-Consultation: "There Is an App for That"
Rajan Dewar, Ilias Levis, James Levine, Robin Joyce. Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA; Ikona Inc., Westwood, MA
Background: Reviewing slides of tumors with the clinical care provider constitutes part of an important consultation activity of a pathologist. This review is traditionally done on a multi-headed microscope or in a multi-speciality tumor board setting. However, these consulting activities demand that the physician to come to the pathologist's office (needing a microscope) or restricted to specific scheduled time (for tumor boards). Pathology slide images also remain important teaching tools within clinical rounds and sometimes with patients. We have implemented an 'app' (short for application) for an iPad, that combines realtime streaming of images telecast wirelessly or the internet.
Design: A compact VGA to ethernet frame grabbing device may be used for this application. We used a commercially available high speed VGA to ethernet frame grabber, that can process up to 120 frames/second. The device is hard wired to the microscope camera using a VGA or DVI cable. A common RJ45 ethernet port is used to interface with a computer for online applications. The framegrabber is connected to a wireless router that provides a wireless LAN connection. Using a proprietory iPad or iPhone app, available from itunes as a freeware (http://itunes.apple.com/pk/app/vga2ethernet/id424225828?mt=8#), images could be transmitted wirelessly in a conference room setting to the iPad. The telepathology consultation portion requires an unique IP address, through which the images are streamed. The consulting physician accesses the website, for reviewing images and for realtime consultation
Results: We implemented the VGA - Ethernet iPhone and iPad application for our clinical colleagues. At frame rates of up to 120 frames/second, the device was able to streamline images realtime through a wireless router and to the iPads. In a multi-user setting, the device is slower, up to 10 seconds for displaying images. These images are useful for real time consultation as well as teaching tool in a clinical rounds setting. The online consultation also is convenient & time saving as remote access telepathology service. This further improves image based consultation for the busy clinician.
Conclusions: An application for realtime wireless image grabbing function for education and clinical consultation is described. This along with the online imaging service is a great digital tool for the busy clinician and pathologist to use image based pathology consultation as well as learning.
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 9:30 AM
Poster Session III # 127, Tuesday Morning