Researchers from Stanford have come up with the means of detecting oral cancer with a nifty little invention called OScan. The device which is attached to a smartphone enables earlier diagnosis of the presence of lesions which are early symptoms of oral cancer. Due to the lack of dentists or nurses in certain areas routine check-ups can be difficult and with this in mind, Manu Prakash who is an assistant professor of bioengineering at Stanford engineered the device which works hand in hand with a smartphone to create detailed images of the oral cavity after which it is screened for lesions that might be suspicious.
The gum-packet sized attachment contains two rows of fluorescent light emitting diodes which illuminate the mouth and highlight any lesions if they are present along with dark spots. The purpose of the smartphone is to transmit images to a site for diagnostics purposes if necessary. The OScan which has been designed for low cost and high volume production with the cost of merely a few dollars is still in its prototype stages but it has already received quite a bit of attention and even won first and second places for the mHealth Alliance Award and the Vodafone Americas Foundation Wireless Innovation Project respectively.
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