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Fully Digital Microscopy for routine diagnostics and integration into hospital information workflow

Objective

This last decade, many medical and technological efforts have been made to turn diagnostic pathology into a reliable medical practice taking advantage of multimedia systems for remote diagnostics, image banks, standards for images (DICOM Visible Light), reporting electronic forms, archiving systems and supporting certification and accreditation procedures. Unfortunately, these candidate materials could not be implemented on a large scale because the conventional microscope, as the central standalone imaging system, is still designed as a human viewing apparatus not suitable for the production of standardised digital images as demonstrated by the PRESS study (Bureau Communautaire des References). The e-scope project thus aims at making the fully digital microscope available for routine diagnostic practice with the key advantage of actually incorporating the standards for medical imaging, archiving and communication, in addition to enabling the certification and accreditation procedures set up for by the diagnostic pathology community.

OBJECTIVES
This last decade, many medical and technological efforts have been made to turn diagnostic pathology into a reliable medical practice taking advantage of multimedia systems for remote diagnostics, image banks, standards for images (DICOM Visible Light), reporting electronic forms, archiving systems and supporting certification and accreditation procedures. Unfortunately, these initiatives could not be implemented on a large scale because the conventional microscope, as the central standalone imaging system, is still designed as a human viewing apparatus not suitable for the production of standardised digital images as demonstrated by the PRESS study (Bureau Communautaire des References). The objective of this e-scope project is thus to make the fully digital microscope available for routine diagnostic practice with the key advantage of actually incorporating the standards for medical imaging, archiving and communication, in addition to enabling the certification and accreditation procedures set up for by the diagnostic pathology community.

DESCRIPTION OF WORK
The project founding statements are:
- The emerging technology of fully digital microscopy is now demonstrated and protected (French and European patents now applying to USPTO);
- The quality of medical diagnostic on digital images compared to direct microscope viewing has been established as very equivalent by independent European projects (HOME, CANTOR, IMPACT and EUROPATH) and hundreds of published studies;
- The requirements for quality assurance and quality control of diagnostic pathology have been formulated and disseminated through the European and International Societies of Pathology and Cytology during this last decade;
- The bottleneck of digital imaging integration in pathology is the conventional microscope that suffers from several limitations in this respect: it is basically analogic, it does not allow reproducible image quality, it is not designed to be networked;
- As of today, all attempts to adapt the conventional microscope into an imaging terminal have decreased its user friendliness and cost effectiveness.
By the association of 3 complementary manufacturers, this project will make available the new generation of digital microscopes to leading pathology laboratories, will integrate the microscope system into the laboratory or hospital computer based environment and, will finally assist the take-up of such technology by a voluntary dissemination and exploitation strategy.

Funding Scheme

DEM - Demonstration contracts

Coordinator

UNIVERSITE JOSEPH FOURIER GRENOBLE 1
Address
621 Avenue Centrale - Domaine Universitaire
38400 Saint Martin D'heres
France

Participants (4)

ISTITUTO NAZIONALE PER LA RICERCA SUL CANCRO
Italy
Address
Largo Rosanna Benzi 10
16132 Genova
SAMBA TECHNOLOGIES SARL
France
Address
Chemin Du Vieux Chene 53
38240 Meylan
SIEMENS MEDICAL SOLUTIONS HEALTH SERVICES GMBH
Germany
Address
Henkestrasse 127
91052 Erlangen
TELEPH (TECHNIQUE ELECTRONIQUE ET PHOTOGRAVURE)
France
Address
Chemin Des Clos Zirst
38240 Meylan