How many of you have gone through ultrasound testing or at least have heard of ultrasound? Ultrasound is the most common technique to look at the fetus in mother’s womb, also known as sonography. Ultrasound is referred to safe and cheap technique to visualize internal organs and detect certain type of defects as compared to exotic techniques like magnetic resonance imaging MRI or computed tomography (CT). MobiSante, a mHealth company based in Redmond, WA is working on a probe that can be attached to smartphones or iPad and can do basic ultrasound analysis. Apart from the convenience of using a ultrasound probe, MobiSante believes that the devices would bring the cost of an ultrasound exam to under $1.
MobiSante has already prototyped a ultrasound probe for Toshiba TG01 smartphone and has won awards at an MIT Enterprise Forum as well as the Mobile Health Expo. The probe is brain child of a computer engineer from Washington University in St. Louis, David Zar, who has extensive experience in working with various aspects of ultrasound hardware and software design and development. David has teamed with Sailesh Chutani, veteran of Microsoft’s Windows Mobile division; MobiSante is piloting its prototype with a small group of physicians and seeking FDA device approval.
There are many unknowns about the ultrasound probe as per iMedicalApps.com like depth of penetration, resolution, etc. The current...
version of the probe lack color Doppler, but the sample images on MobiSante website allow some fair visualizaton of the echotexture of the body parts like kidney.
MobiSante ultrasound probe may not be able to every thing that a sophisticated ultrasound imaging equipment is capable of, but I think this is a step in the right direction. The most attractive feature of the probe is the portability and cost of analysis, which would be more beneficial to developing countries. In developing countries like India and China, remote place do not have access to imaging equipments like ultrasound and MobiSante’s probe provide a excellent tool in hands of local physicians. We look forward to hear back on MobiSante’s development on the ultrasound probe.