Image app for the pathologically inclined

The University of NSW's Department of Pathology and Museum of Human Disease have come together to design an interactive educational app for medical students and practitioners that catalogues thousands of images of diseased tissue stored by the museum.

The Images of Disease app is intended to promote learning about disease processes and their effects on human tissues and organs. It includes views of gross pathology and histopathology, with selected images appended by diagnostic imaging investigations and clinical and autopsy images.

Images can be searched by disease name, organ system or pathological process, with hundreds of diseases covered. A number of interactive ‘hotspotted’ images are available to enable in-depth exploration of the features of common diseases.

When a specimen name is highlighted in red, this indicates that there are hotspots on the specimen which will display a text description and red outline.

The app also includes a ruler icon to measure the actual size of the specimen or features within the specimen.

Head of the Department of Pathology Gary Velan said students can look up a particular disease, see what it looks like, read about its typical clinical features and see other diagnostic imaging investigations such as an MRI scan or X-ray that would normally accompany the condition.

The app is optimised for iPhone 5 and is only available for iOS-based devices for the time being. It costs $17.99 through iTunes but is free to UNSW medical students.

“We are hoping that through app sales we will be able to fund the development of the app for Android and Windows devices so all students will be able to access it,” Associate Professor Velan said.

Posted in Australian eHealth

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