A novel speculum-free imaging strategy for visualization of the internal female lower reproductive system.
Fear of the speculum and feelings of vulnerability during the gynecologic exams are two of the biggest barriers to cervical cancer screening for women. To address these barriers, we have developed a novel, low-cost tool called the Callascope to reimagine the gynecological exam, enabling clinician and self-imaging of the cervix without the need for a speculum. The Callascope contains a 2 megapixel camera and contrast agent spray mechanism housed within a form factor designed to eliminate the need for a speculum during contrast agent administration and image capture. Preliminary bench testing for comparison of the Callascope camera to a $20,000 high-end colposcope demonstrated that the Callascope camera meets visual requirements for cervical imaging. Bench testing of the spray mechanism demonstrates that the contrast agent delivery enables satisfactory administration and cervix coverage. Clinical studies performed at Duke University Medical Center, Durham, USA and in Greater Accra Regional Hospital, Accra, Ghana assessed (1) the Callascope's ability to visualize the cervix compared to the standard-of-care speculum exam, (2) the feasibility and willingness of women to use the Callascope for self-exams, and (3) the feasibility and willingness of clinicians and their patients to use the Callascope for clinician-based examinations. Cervix visualization was comparable between the Callascope and speculum (83% or 44/53 women vs. 100%) when performed by a clinician. Visualization was achieved in 95% (21/22) of women who used the Callascope for self-imaging. Post-exam surveys indicated that participants preferred the Callascope to a speculum-based exam. Our results indicate the Callascope is a viable option for clinician-based and self-exam speculum-free cervical imaging.Clinical study registration ClinicalTrials.gov https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/record/ NCT00900575, Pan African Clinical Trial Registry (PACTR) https://www.pactr.org/ PACTR201905806116817.
Asiedu, MN; Agudogo, JS; Dotson, ME; Skerrett, E; Krieger, MS; Lam, CT; Agyei, D; Amewu, J; Asah-Opoku, K; Huchko, M; Schmitt, JW; Samba, A; Srofenyoh, E; Ramanujam, N
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