CANDID CONVERSATIONS BETWEEN OPTOMETRIC OFFICE’S RICHARD CLOMPUS AND LEADING OPTICAL EXECUTIVES ABOUT THEIR PRODUCT STRATEGIES.
Optos Vice President of Global Product Marketing Leslie Amodei brings over 25 years of global medical device sales and marketing experience to her post. Prior to joining Optos in 2010, she was involved in marketing medical devices with unique technologies such as the first excimer laser for refractive surgery and the only plasma energy-based aesthetic device.
Richard Clompus: How did the launch of the ultra-wide field retinal imaging device change the way practitioners examine eyes?
Leslie Amodei: In 2000, Optos delivered the first and only retinal imaging device that could capture 200Â° or 82% of the retina. The ability to clearly image that much of the retina””in one capture, and in less than one second””significantly influenced the way ECPs examined their patients’ eyes.
Richard: How does the technology create a 200Â° image?
Leslie: Our technology is based on a scanning laser ophthalmoscope and a unique ellipsoid mirror that create a virtual focal point inside the eye to enable the single capture of the central retina and periphery. For color images, green and red lasers are engaged simultaneously to allow visualization of retinal substructures from the sensory retina and retinal pigment epithelium to the choroid.
Richard: What are the latest improvements to this technology?
Leslie: We have continued to develop our hardware and software platforms. We have created devices with a much smaller footprint that offer more imaging modalities in one device than any other retinal imaging device on the market. In addition, the image capture and viewing software is technically superior to anything else that I’ve seen. For example, when our images are viewed, they are an anatomically correct representation of the retina. With a standard fundus image (10%-45% of the retina), you would expect this. However, when you image 82% of the retina you need to think outside of the boundaries because the further out you go, the more shape bias occurs (think “Greenland Effect”). Our ProViewâ„¢ technology is capable of removing systematic image variations and presenting optomap images in a consistent geometry that accurately represents anatomical features in the retina.
Richard: Do the newer, smaller instruments provide the same functionality?
Leslie: All optomap-enabled devices can image 200Â° or 82% of the retina and have the same functionality. However, there are many benefits to the latest technology. The smaller size of the Daytona or California is important in ever-shrinking exam lanes. Plus, these devices offer more imaging modalities such as autofluorescence. Fundus autofluorescence images can detect changes and disease that would not be identified in a color fundus image. California also offers the ability to do fluorescein and indocyanine green angiography procedures.
Richard: I’ve noticed some of my colleagues use this technology as an alternative to routine pupil dilation. How have patients responded?
Leslie: Patients really enjoy the ease of use, speed, and the “wow” factor of our optomap images. It can be the first time that many people have seen the inside of their eye and retina, therefore making optomap images a valuable patient education tool. Many of our doctors have reported that their difficult patients alter their behavior based upon what they have seen in their optomap.
Richard: What’s next for ultra-widefield imaging and Optos?
Leslie: The future for ultra-wide field and Optos is bright. As you may know, Optos was recently acquired by Nikon to anchor the medical division in its “Next100″”Transform to Grow” strategy. Both Nikon and Optos are committed to strengthen and grow the product line by combining our expertise. Over the next few years I am confident that ECPs will be amazed with the products that will come from this partnership.