Throat Scope provides a better alternative to traditional methods of oral cavity examination by eliminating the need for wooden tongue depressor and a separate, hand held torch during oral examination. The use of both hands can present difficulties for clinicians, especially when the subject is a child. The Throat Scope device frees up one hand, enabling a faster, safer, more accurate and comfortable examination experience for both patients and clinicians. The device can be used in a clinical setting or easily and safely at home by an adult to examine the oral cavity before seeking medical expertise.
The slim profile design ensures minimal differences between the use of a standard wooden tongue depressor, making the addition of a illuminated tongue depressor seamless with the existing context of use. Small coin batteries ensure the correct light intensity and life. The aesthetic design ensures the device looks fit for function, seamlessly integrating the light and tongue depressor while addressing key ergonomic factors for comfortable use. The device was designed with simple top down assembly to minimise device cost and assembly error. Internal retention features were also included in the housing to ensure access to the battery was restricted, preventing any safety issues around small coin batteries.
Each device includes an easily detachable and removable tongue depressor to safeguard against cross contamination. In a literature review conducted by ide Group's Quality Management team, some clinicians have in the past recommended avoiding wooden tongue depressors due to health risks. Most risks related to use of wooden tongue depressors in their usual clinical use scenario were found to include manufacturing and material related issues, such as splintering, variation in product thickness/flexibility and ineffective cleaning procedures on wooden products. However, these issues are not expected to be of concern for Throat Scope due to the product's design, manufacturing and cleaning procedures in place.
The device features automatic light operation, which illuminates and extinguishes when the tongue depressor is inserted and removed into the light housing. By lighting the oral cavity through the end of the tongue depressor, more light is available in the area of interest, allowing for a more accurate oral examination. The automatic light activation also saves time during examination, with easy insertion and disposable of the tongue depressor blade.
Patient benefits include faster oral examination (this is especially important for children, restless, resistance to opening mouth for long periods of time) and more accurate examination by lighting directly into the oral cavity. The simple use of the Throat Scope device allows for the device also to be sold to the home market through pharmacies and supermarkets, broadening awareness of bacterial infections in the mouth, which encourages patients to seek medical advice/treatment sooner, reducing the time to recovery.