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A-02: E-Atlas – barrier-free publication of medical images independent of any platform

Developing an app for platform-independent and barrier-free publishing of medical images and diagnostic suspicion creation

The world's largest image database for ophthalmology, the "Atlas of Ophthalmology", is now available as an app for mobile devices. With just a single click, doctors, medicine students or laymen interested in health issues can receive over 6,000 clinical illness patterns on their iPhone. Doctors therefore always have decisive information at hand for visual diagnoses, confirmation of diagnoses or for informing the patient – a situation which clearly benefits the patient, whose care is improved by the eye app.

This iPhone application was developed within the framework of a funded project in the Medical Valley European Metropolitan Region Nuremberg (EMN) Leading Edge Cluster for medical engineering by the Nuremberg IT company Voigtmann GmbH - which specializes in innovative information technology - and the Verlag from Erlangen, which also publishes the Internet Atlas. The technology the app is based on was funded by the German Ministry for Education and Research. A diagnosis, ICD-10 code and a short commentary accompany the images. The image database of the Atlas of Ophthalmology provides the basis for the Eye Atlas app. The Atlas is published by Prof. Georg Michelson from the Eye Clinic at the University Hospital Erlangen. The Atlas of Ophthalmology currently contains clinical images relating to almost all eye diagnoses, from common illnesses like glaucoma and macula degeneration right through to very rare diseases.

The photographs come with the related diagnosis, the corresponding ICD-10 code and a short comment: With just a click, users can quickly and easily call up valuable information on various illnesses. There is also a search function with which specific images or cases can be found by entering diagnoses or key words; they are then displayed in a list. All the images and diagnoses which can be accessed via the app have been checked by experts. "The eye app is a striking example of just how valuable the link between medicine and information technology really is for doctors and, above all, for patients," says Prof. Georg Michelson. "The Eye Atlas was previously only available on the Internet, but now it has been ideally tuned for use via iPhone, which means that it has become mobile."

Image database is being continuously expanded

Medical specialists from all over the world make sure that the Atlas of Ophthalmology is always up to date and that it also contains very rare illness patterns. Doctors send their diagnoses to Prof. Michelson and his team of international experts in the field of ophthalmology. This ensures that high-resolution image data is available on rare conditions like Stargardt's disease, for example. The Atlas of Ophthalmology is internationally recognized and officially endorsed by the International Council of Ophthalmology (ICO). The Atlas of Ophthalmology app is expected to be available from the iTunes Store from August 1, 2011 and will be available in several different languages: English, German, Spanish, Russian, Arabic, Chinese and Japanese. Work is in progress on a Portuguese version.

Project Duration

01.07.2010 - 30.06.2013

Project Partners

  • Voigtmann GmbH
  • Verlag Online Journals of Ophthalmology
  • Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU)
  • Universitätsklinikum Erlangen
  • Siemens Aktiengesellschaft Healthcare

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