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Kira L Lathrop, Nathan S Smialek, Stephanie F Lee, Ian P McIntyre, Harrison M Harker, Thorin S Tobiassen, Kanwal Nischal, Cornea; M-OCT: A flexible, portable mounting system for OCT imaging. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2014;55(13):1637.
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The goal of this project was to develop a portable mounting device for a handheld OCT unit that provided enough stability to acquire high resolution OCT volumes in a wide range of positions. The mount had to have high freedom of movement, ability to rotate 360 degrees around a defined circumference while maintaining the same (adjustable) angle, fine focus, ability to accommodate new and developing OCT imaging needs, and have full mechanical control. Additionally, the mount needed to rapidly convert between handheld and mounted configurations and had to accommodate surgical, geriatric, pediatric, supine and prone patients, be cart mounted and able to accommodate a range of different lenses.
A portion of the M-OCT was developed from a pre-existing articulating mount, but the critical components of the mount were custom designed to provide fine adjustments and hold the instrument at any angle as well as to revolve a full 360 degrees around a selected circumference. A holder was designed that could accept adapters customized for different instruments. Custom parts were manufactured at the University of Pittsburgh Swanson Center for Product Innovation.
Initial surgical experience was highly successful and imaging was improved in speed and quality with the mount. Several areas were identified that could be improved such as ease of motion in one of the joints and fine control in the angle adjustment, these refinements will be addressed in the next prototype. Immediate feedback from the surgical suite was very positive and the M-OCT was used to image several different structures. Volume reconstructions of image sets acquired with the M-OCT were comparable to those acquired in a fixed OCT system.
Commercially available OCT systems are capable of imaging in-vivo in the 5 micron range, and while OCT is limited in the depth that it can achieve, this high resolution imaging is finding extensive clinical application in numerous fields. Handheld OCT systems have expanded the range of OCT applications, but high-resolution volume scans are extremely difficult with a handheld unit. The M-OCT bridges the stability of a fixed OCT system with the flexibility of a handheld unit and facilitates optimal imaging in surgery as well as in the clinic or research setting. The M-OCT prototype has demonstrated strong proof-of-concept and further development will improve ease of motion, accuracy and speed of operation.
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