Facilitating Medical Information Search Using Google Glass Connected to a Content-Based Medical Image Retrieval System

Widmer, Antoine ;   Schaer, Roger ;   Markonis, Dimitrios ;   Müller, Henning

Wearable computing devices are starting to change the way users interact with computers and the Internet. Among them, Google Glass includes a small screen located in front of the right eye, a camera filming in front of the user and a small computing unit. Google Glass has the advantage to provide online services while allowing the user to perform tasks with his/her hands. These augmented glasses uncover many useful applications, also in the medical domain. For example, Google Glass can easily provide video conference between medical doctors to discuss a live case. Using these glasses can also facilitate medical information search by allowing the access of a large amount of annotated medical cases during a consultation in a non--disruptive fashion for medical staff. In this paper, we developed a Google Glass application able to take a photo and send it to a medical image retrieval system along with keywords in order to retrieve similar cases. As a preliminary assessment of the usability of the application, we tested the application under three conditions (images of the skin; printed CT scans and MRI images; and CT and MRI images acquired directly from an LCD screen) to explore whether using Google Glass affects the accuracy of the results returned by the medical image retrieval system. The preliminary results show that despite minor problems due to the relative stability of the Google Glass, images can be sent to and processed by the medical image retrieval system and similar images are returned to the user, potentially helping in the decision making process.