Haag-Streit has launched the Eyesi Indirect Ophthalmoscope ROP Simulator (Eyesi Indirect ROP) for training of retinal examinations on premature babies and classification of retinopathy of prematurity (ROP).

ROP is one of the leading causes of serious visual impairment in premature infants, including blindness. With early diagnosis, severe structural malformations can be prevented. Yet, performing a retinal examination on a premature infant is challenging and must be carried out quickly and skilfully due to the baby’s lack of cooperation. Haag-Streit is now introducing a high-fidelity training system to allow residents to practice device handling and decision-making in a lifelike, yet risk-free, environment. 

The Eyesi Indirect ROP is a mixed-reality simulator that offers an immersive training environment for proper device handling with an embedded, didactically structured simulator curriculum to teach the diagnostic skills required for correct ROP classification. The simulator resembles every relevant aspect of the real examination scenario. It consists of a head-mounted stereo display representing an ophthalmoscope, a patient model head with pliable eyes, and mimics of lenses and a scleral depressor. 

The user is presented with an immersive 3D simulation of the patient; the indirect ophthalmoscope mimic, the handheld lens, and the patient’s eye must be aligned precisely to visualize the retina. The rubber eyes can be indented and tilted into different directions using the scleral depressor to add to an immersive, close-to-life environment. The effect of the manipulation is simulated in real-time.

The Eyesi Indirect ROP offers a standardized curriculum featuring virtual patients with different stages of retinopathy, including aggressive ROP, plus disease and retinal detachment, thereby ensuring that each resident has been trained on the same range of pathologies. The simulator curriculum teaches the main characteristics of ROP and how to recognize the different zones and stages according to the “International Classification of Acute Stages of Retinopathy of Prematurity.” Trainees also become acquainted with their specific country’s guidelines for screening intervals and treatment of ROP. Online courses for self-guided learning provide medical background and complement the practical training on the simulator.

The Eyesi Indirect ROP provides trainees and educators with a detailed assessment of examination and classification skills. Evaluated parameters are, for example, the light exposure, completeness of the retinal area examined, completeness and correctness of findings, appropriate use of indentation, or examination time. With the combination of a standardized curriculum and computer-based evaluation, the training system can ensure that each trainee reaches a standard performance level.

"Approximately 14,000 preterm infants in the US develop retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), making it one of the leading causes of preventable childhood blindness worldwide. Yet, in a world where the ROP exam is a source of stress for tiny patients, every touch matters,” says Manuela Sutter-Meler, Director of Sales at Haag-Streit Simulation.

The Eyesi Indirect ROP is available as of April 2, 2024, and targets ophthalmic residencies as well as programs for neonatology.

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