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Research Highlights Potential Benefits of Telemedicine in Treating Eye Disease
Date:11/12/2007

hold ROP, and treatment-requiring ROP.

Shortly after the physician's examination, a trained nurse captured retinal images of the same child using a wide-angle camera. A period of four to twelve months was allowed to elapse before images were shown to the same doctor who performed ophthalmoscopy, in order to minimize any chance that the examiner could remember details.

In 86 percent of the eyes, there was complete agreement between the diagnoses made by ophthalmoscopy and telemedicine. Among eyes where there was disagreement between the examination modalities, 12 cases involved clinically- significant discrepancies regarding presence of zone I disease or plus disease. Dr. Chiang suggests that telemedicine diagnosis may be more accurate in these cases, because images can be compared directly with standard photographic definitions of zone I or plus disease.

"Telemedicine exam may be more reproducible than if you see an infant's retina only briefly during ophthalmoscopy," he says. "There is a rationale that image-based examination may be better because findings are documented photographically. In many other ophthalmic diseases, definitions are based on standard images, so this has implications for the way we might deliver the best care to patients in the future."

About the American Academy of Ophthalmology

The American Academy of Ophthalmology is the world's largest association of eye physicians and surgeons-Eye M.D.s-with more than 27,000 members worldwide. Eye health care is provided by the three "O's" - opticians, optometrists and ophthalmologists. It is the ophthalmologist, or Eye M.D., who can treat it all: eye diseases and injuries, and perform eye surgery. To find an Eye M.D. in your area, visit the Academy's Web site at http://www.aao.org.


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SOURCE American Academy of Ophthalmology
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