StartUp Health — August 29, 2019
Meet the founders of four companies improving medical imaging and augmenting human vision
The eyes are among the most complex organs in the human body, second only to the brain. When they work properly, they allow us to delight in faces and places, to learn from what we observe, and to protect ourselves from danger. When something goes wrong, however, our quality of life and work is instantly compromised – which is why clear vision is key for doctors and their patients alike.
But many of the “eyes” in the medical industry have grown outdated. Static vision assessment tools have long been used to diagnose ocular and cognitive performance, despite the fact that the world around us is constantly in motion. Many of the cameras, screens, and lenses we rely on for diagnostic imaging use technology that was developed decades ago and clutter operating rooms with unsafe cords and wires – leading to over 200 OR fires each year. New imaging tools could help doctors make better diagnoses, circumvent risky surgeries, and gather valuable data. New ways of seeing in the OR could improve precision when a patient needs it most.
Those advancements will become increasingly necessary for our aging population, both in the ophthalmological field and beyond. Macular degeneration most often affects individuals over age 60, which means the Baby Boomers are currently entering into the early stages of the disease. The electronic magnifiers that helped their parents – those clunky, microfiche-style devices that assist in reading and writing – just won’t cut it for a digitally literate younger generation. What’s more, 45 million people around the world currently suffer from increased intraocular pressure, a precursor for glaucoma. Early detection and monitoring could halt progression of the disease, which is the second leading cause of blindness worldwide.
The innovators below are opening up new windows onto modern health. Their four startups are working to change the way we see and treat disease and helping patients live brighter, more beautiful lives.
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Eugene Malinskiy, Ilya Malinskiy & Daniel Dudley
The founders of Indago are on a mission to create the operating room of the future through smart surgical tools. With ArthroFree, the world’s first fully wireless minimally-invasive camera, surgeons can navigate the OR unencumbered by unsafe and unwieldy cables. With a proprietary, patent-pending light engine, secure FDA/FCC-approved wireless data transfer, and a custom, ergonomic design created with leading physicians, the company is bringing ORs into the digital age. Indago has two patent applications published in the US, EU, Japan, and China, with an additional five scheduled for publication in the next 18 months. They have also completed the development of the ArthroFree Platform and audited the entire supply chain in preparation for commercial scale production.