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Anatomy of an App
Diagnosing a pancreatic condition has gotten a lot easier, thanks to the interactive power of the Atlas of Pancreas Pathology i Pad app, with its 1,400 high-resolution color images.
In the Works
Through ongoing collaborations with Zhejiang DIAN Diagnostics Co., the Johns Hopkins team has plans to develop iPad apps on the pathology of eye diseases, brain tumors, thyroid tumors and skin; thyroid cytopathology; gastrointestinal pathology; and prostate pathology. Each app will be available in English and Chinese.
Resident, fellows and practicing pathologists around the world have a new tool for diagnosing pancreatic conditions, thanks to an iPad app co-developed by faculty in Johns Hopkins’ departments of Pathology and Art as Applied to Medicine.
Unlike a textbook, which may have one example of a certain lesion on the pancreas, the app provides numerous examples through photos, microscopic views and illustrated videos. Developed in 2012 and updated last spring, the Atlas of Pancreas Pathology covers 115 diagnostic entities, with 1,400 hi-res color images with captions, and 26 original medical illustrations.
“The app harnesses the power of tablets to host a large number of images and make them interactive and with multimedia,” says Ralph Hruban, director of pathology. “Each person learns differently, and we can present materials in a number of formats that empower the user to learn in a way that feels best.”
The Atlas of Pancreas Pathology app has an interactive teaching algorithm, or decision tree, that prompts users to answer questions to arrive at a diagnosis; a searchable image database where users can view examples based on a diagnosis or features of the tissue; flashcards; and an image-based quiz.
“Our goal is to teach as many people as we can,” says collaborating pathologist Toby Cornish, who notes that the app can be downloaded for free through the iTunes store.