A redesigned, affordable endoscope could revolutionize cancer screening in impoverished countries.
The prototype endoscope, which can be used to check the upper part of the digestive tract for cancer, was created by a team from Leeds University. Instead of the typical mechanical system made up of cables and cogs, the simplified device consists of a handheld control column and a disposable section made up of a silicon tube and capsule that holds the tiny camera. The endoscope is pneumatically operated, and the disposable modules eliminate the need for cleaning between patients.
According to professor Pietro Valdastri, "By radically re-thinking the way the device works, is manufactured and operated—we have come up with a solution that is a fraction of the cost of conventional endoscopes. Based on the prototype, we estimate the device could be manufactured for around £40. Currently, conventional endoscopes cost roughly £80,000.”
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