The pulse of digital transformation and new technologies in Eyecare

Digital transformation and new technologies in eyecare are undeniably a determining factor in today’s sector. Any Eyecare Professional looking to provide a quality service to their customers and stay at the forefront of their market must be familiar with the latest tools and how to use them.

This is why we are going to show you several advances in the fields of artificial intelligence, telepathic and virtual reality, which are fast becoming essential allies for Eyecare clinics.

Artificial intelligence in optometry

Artificial intelligence, an ally in detecting and treating eye disease

In 2018, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) allowed the marketing of the first medical device that uses artificial intelligence to detect greater than a mild level of the eye disease diabetic retinopathy in adults who have diabetes.

Since then, this technology has continued to take a hold in the sector, with resources for refining patient information, improving diagnoses and supporting treatment. Let’s take a look at some examples.

More personalized diagnoses and treatment with AI-based information

Artificial intelligence and big data allows huge amounts of data to be obtained and analyzed, meaning information is much more accurate than before and can be contrasted with patient data to obtain more personalized diagnoses and treatments.

For example, in refractive corneal surgery, the processing of topographic and tomographic information using AI can guide surgeons in obtaining quality results that fit the specific structure of the patient’s eye.

Other uses of artificial intelligence in Eye Care

Beyond those already mentioned regarding detection of diabetic retinopathy and refractive corneal surgery, artificial intelligence also allows us to more accurately classify damage, monitor the progress of certain diseases and establish graphics to monitor affects such as age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) or macular edema.

Telemedicine: breaking down barriers

Telemedicine in eyecare plays a key role in the digital evolution of eye care. By using smart devices with high-resolution cameras and diagnostic tools based on AI, patients in remote areas can now access consultations with experts without the need to travel to a clinic.

Better patient experience using virtual reality

Virtual reality has evolved beyond the world of video games. In the field of eyecare, virtual reality devices are used to perform field of vision tests, providing a more immersive and accurate experience. Furthermore, these applications are turning into valuable tools in rehabilitating patients with altered fields of vision, training the brain to adapt and improve visual perception.

In short, artificial intelligence and other similar technologies are opening many doors in eyecare; However, we must bear in mind that artificial intelligence has its limitations. For example, the obscurity of the algorithms used in its learning, the need to consider a broad diversity of data (representing the variability of the population and which are scientifically supported), as well as the need for regulations that guarantee the safety and confidentiality of the patients’ data.

This is why artificial intelligence must always only be used as a guide to decision-making for eyecare practitioners. It is also crucial to combine it with technology, scientific knowledge and a full understanding of the patients’ needs.

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