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8th January 2015

Ear infection? Get your phone … or the penguin

Your baby is up at 3am, crying. You try the usual routine, nothing works.

Aftwr that never-ending night your day starts off with a rush to the nearest Children’s Hospital. It could be a swallowed lego piece, an ear infection, or a cough tantrum. How many times do you ask yourself, what could have I done if I’ve known.

With information at our fingertips we’ve all become “diagnosers” ourselves. Though everyone advises against it, it’s hard not to hit our laptops and google the symptoms, the possible causes and egt caught up in expecting the worst.

Opcom debuted a home-endoscope for these very situations. Nicknamed the Penguin Scope it is a relatively low-quality endoscope parents can use at home to capture images or record video of a given body part (mostly the ear, the mouth or the skin). You can then transfer the footage wirelessly or your smartphone for safekeeping.

It seems after the Scanadu Scout, home-testing for children is the new hit. And why wouldn’t it be. Reducing the worrysome glances, the nervous phone calls and the creases on foreheads to give way for greater peace of mind and less worry is a welcoming thought.

iPhone hacked otoscope

Earaches are nothing out of the ordinary for parents.

According to the NHS, every fourth child will develop at least one ear infection before their 10th birthday. And though most of the times it can easily be treated, parents who have woken up to the cries of their young one in the middle of the night will have to agree it’s not as easy as it sounds.

“It saves you that trip, saves you that worry”

“We want to bring the doctor into your home.” Erik Douglas, co-founder and CEO explained.

A San Francisco based start-up, Cellscope wants to do just that. They developed an otoscope (the device that doctors place in the ear) that can be fitted on a smartphone and used at home.

It uses the camera of the smartphone to record images of the inner ear. Then with the help of an app you can send it off to a remote doctor who will provide a diagnosis, send a treatment plan and if necessary an electronic prescription.“It saves you that trip, saves you that worry,” Erik said.

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