Blog 9 April 2021

iCare TrueColor Confocality combines two traditional imaging technologies, providing a distinct advantage over both standard fundus and SLO systems

iCare's TrueColor Confocal Technology
Retinitis Pigmentosa

iCare’s TrueColor Confocal Technology exceeds the limits of conventional fundus and SLO imaging devices by combining the best assets of both.

Put simply, fundus cameras provide high color fidelity and SLO systems produchigh sharpness, clarity and overall accuracy and detail in imagesWhen combined, these features make for superiorquality images of the retinal landscape in true-to-life colours. 

What are the advantages and limits of traditional imaging technologies and what does TrueColor Confocal Technology offer by combining their best assets? 

A winning combination that offers an advantage over traditional imaging solutions

To diagnose and follow up on common pathologies like diabetic retinopathy and age-related macular degeneration, fundus imaging devices need to be capable of combining high resolution, high contrast, and high-color fidelity. This makes it possible capture small signs and details and discriminate between subtle changes that could be otherwise easy to miss 

While standard SLO systems have high clarity, sharpness and contrast capabilities and traditional fundus cameras offer high color fidelity, conventional imaging solutions do not combine the two. 

Exceeding the limits of conventional fundus cameras and SLO systems 

Conventional flash fundus cameras capture color images of the retina, the quality of which could be affected by the presence of media opacities (such as cataracts or corneal opacities), dirt on device lenses, small pupils, and fundus layers different from the retina itself (i.e. choroidal backscatter). This results in a retinal image that typically looks flat, overexposed in the red channel, with washed-out areas, and with overall lower resolution and lower contrast than what can be achieved with a confocal optical engine. 

The monochromatic lasers used in standard SLO systems, thanks to the confocal optical engine, can provide high sharpness and high contrast images. On the other hand, they cannot capture the retina in its true colors. 

Compared to traditional solutions, iCare’s TrueColor Confocal Technology offers improved image quality, enhanced contrast, more finely detailed images, suppression of scattered light, and better imaging of patients with poor dilation*, together with a wide richness of color content and high color fidelity. 

True-to-life retinal images with enhanced color fidelity that capture smallest of details 

Fundus imaging systems generate natural color images only if they employ white light: this means that all the wavelengths of the visible spectrum are present in the illumination beam used to acquire the retinal image. Thus, different color details can be discriminated in the image acquired. 

On the contrary, systems employing monochromatic light sources, such as SLO systems, use just specific wavelengths to illuminate the retina. Therefore, they provide pseudo color images, lacking some spectral components and resulting in missing information and/or color artifacts. 

iCare has the distinction of using white LED light combined with confocal optics to help acquire high-quality retinal images with enhanced color fidelity. 

 

* A comparison between a white LED confocal imaging system and a conventional flash fundus camera using chromaticity analysis  published in BMC Ophthalmology