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Board member: DermSpectra to revolutionize skin care

By KIMBERLEY HAAS
Union Leader Correspondent

September 18. 2017 8:13PM
A new digital imaging system will change the way doctors treat patients and their skin, according to company officials. (Courtesy of Digital Skin Imaging)

PORTSMOUTH — A former U.S. Surgeon General says the technology developed by Digital Skin Imaging could revolutionize the way doctors approach treating diseases of the skin.

According to Dr. Richard Carmona, who is on the DermSpectra board, its new machines allow doctors to track changes to the skin better. That means earlier skin cancer detection and more access to screenings.

“It really comes down to GPS mapping of the body,” Carmona said. “It brings technology into the realm of something that was done by hand before.”

Carmona said dermatologists have been taking photos of moles for years, and try to determine if they have changed by eye. Now, the precision of DermSpectra does that work for the doctor.

Estimates from The Skin Cancer Foundation in New York City are that each year in the United States, more than 5.4 million cases of nonmelanoma skin cancer are treated in more than 3.3 million people. One in five Americans will develop skin cancer over the course of their lifetime, according to the foundation.

The foundation reports that the annual cost of treating skin cancers in the U.S. is an estimated $8.1 billion, with about $4.8 billion for nonmelanoma skin cancers and $3.3 billion for melanoma.

Carmona said DermSpectra can be used for eczema and other skin diseases as well. He hopes the technology can be applied to other areas of medicine.

“We all believe this could be truly disruptive in all areas of medicine,” Carmona said.

Linda Fanaras, the executive vice president of DermSpectra, said the company’s mission is to make sure every person has a full body digital skin image in their medical records to ensure physicians can objectively review and analyze the health of the skin. The technology can be used by dermatologists, primary care physicians, telemedicine centers, vein specialists and plastic surgeons.

“Digital images captured through the DermSpectra system can be marked using simple touch screen features that allow physicians to zoom in on lesions, add notes, circle abnormalities or changes, annotate directly on the image, and attach a report,” Fanaras wrote in a statement.

Fanaras said patients experience a private, 10-minute session while their doctor views the latest digital images, annotates directly to the image, and securely stores the images on a HIPPA-compliant server database.

Karleen Seybold, CEO of DSI Acquisition, said the breakthrough technology is in the initial roll-out phases. So far, the DermSpectra system is located at Well America Clinics, Walter Reed Army Hospital and Oregon Health and Science University.

Seybold made the decision to move her company to Portsmouth from Arizona following a meeting with Gov. Chris Sununu and company executives earlier this year. An official welcoming ceremony was held at Medtronic in August.


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