Retinal Imaging System

Description: The invention overcomes certain problems inherent in traditional systems for retinal imaging through pupils that have not undergone pharmacological dilation (mydriasis). This is of particular importance in teleophthalmology, where pupil dilation can be a barrier for retinal eye examinations, particularly in patients where natural pupil dilation in low ambient light is small. To reduce haze and glare in the image of the retina, it is necessary to keep the retinal illuminating rays largely separate from the central region of the crystalline lens of the eye through which the retina is observed. In some retinal imagers, the illuminating rays are in the form of a ring with a central hole through which the retinal observations are made. In others, the illuminating rays are concentrated into a single small circular region that is usually positioned at some point on the periphery of the pupil. Such methods do not work particularly well in patients whose pupils remain small. This invention provides a method for creating and delivering the ideal bundle of rays for a non-ring shaped illumination system to provide a high quality retinal image with a field of view comparable to that obtained when imaging through a pharmacologically dilated pupil. The invention also features other methods for reducing unwanted specular reflections in retinal imaging, and for stereoscopic imaging of the retina. Clinical & Commercial Utility: The imaging system of the invention offers tangible advantages over existing ophthalmoscopes and retinal imaging systems for non-mydriatic imaging of the retina. Its specific advantage is in providing an improved imaging capability and retinal image quality for patients with small pupil dilation, less than 3.8 mm or even less than 2.5 mm, for which existing systems do not work particularly well. Individuals with diabetes, as well as many older patients, have such small pupil dilation. In addition, the device can be manufactured much less expensively than existing systems, is portable, and may therefore be more generally applicable for widespread use in retinal pathological assessment with many types of patients.
Joslin Diabetes Center is the owner of U.S. Patent Number 7,338,167 claiming this invention.

Type of Offer: Licensing

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