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Vein camera keeps injections on target

It looks like a ghoulish Halloween trick. Yet the device, which projects a creepy green video image of a patient's veins onto their skin, is about to go on trial in a US hospital. The idea is that it will help staff to pinpoint a suitable vein for an injection or a drip.

The prototype of the system, which he calls a vein contrast enhancer (VCE), uses a near-infrared camera to capture a real-time video image of the patient's veins, a PC to enhance the contrast of the image and a desktop video projector to display it on the skin in real time.

Zeman has now miniaturised the VCE system to fit it in a package the size of a shoebox, making it portable enough to be mounted on an intravenous drip stand. Three prototypes will begin clinical trials at a hospital in Tennessee later in 2004.

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13 Responses:

  1. lars_larsen says:

    Heroin addicts rejoice!

  2. ivorjawa says:

    You know, I'd rather have doctors and nurses that have the technical skill to find a vein when, say, the power goes out.
    This looks like a goofy one-task device akin to the goofy one-task kitchen devices showing up in Target lately: s'mores makers. "Low-carb" quesodilla makers. I shit you not.

    • wfaulk says:

      I agree, but as a person with small, deep veins, I'd be all for a system that helped, as I don't really enjoy getting stuck four or five times, often with accompanying squirming of the needle inside my arm as they search for the vein, every time I give blood.

    • lars_larsen says:

      Everyone's veins are different. They have to find them anyway.

  3. jkonrath says:

    OK, so when are we going to see this used in a porno?

  4. injector says:

    I noticed this same effect using my Sony Night Vision camcorder with a low-pass IR filter.

  5. omnifarious says:

    What do you bet that the system has $1000 worth of parts and is sold to hospitals at $20000 apiece? :-(

  6. azimuth0 says:

    This sort of thing would be awesome just inside the door.