Diagnostics support

© Photo Fraunhofer IPA

 In a wide range of projects, the department “Machine Vision and Signal Processing” is developing technical aids to support diagnostics. The objective is to supply doctors and medical staff with additional information to help reduce the risk of diagnosis errors, as well as speed up the diagnosis process. While technical aids provide additional indicators, medical staff are still responsible for interpreting data and classifying it in the overall context. Optical sensors and intelligent algorithms are used as technical aids. In the process, data is captured in different ways. Whereas there is a clear test situation in some projects, in others, tests are conducted in a more light-hearted fashion to eliminate the character of an examination from the project.

One example is the recognition of emotional states based on movements of the body. 3-D sensor technology is implemented to record the moods of people suffering from dementia or bipolar disorders. To evaluate the advance of disorders such as dementia in a detailed but light-hearted way, standardized tests are carried out in the form of "serious games". These also serve to stimulate patients, thus aiding their therapy. For patients with Parkinson’s disease, special 3-D sensors are used to detect and classify tremors. This assists diagnosis, as well as the evaluation of the effectiveness of medication and everyday support.