Trauma is the leading cause of death in persons ages 1 to 44. The Focused Assessment with Sonography for Trauma (FAST) procedure is an ultrasound examination used to detect internal bleeding in the abdomen, as a marker of significant injury. Performing the FAST exam is challenging. It requires expertise in ultrasound image acquisition, anatomy, and fluid identification. FAST also requires appropriate equipment and timely application.

Our team (InnerOptic and collaborators Kitware and Washington University) is developing a mobile augmented reality (AR) system for novice ultrasound operators to perform life-saving detection of pooled blood. The system will consist of a low-cost ultrasound probe and a head-worn AR display, connected to a ruggedized belt-worn Android device, running innovative pooled blood detection algorithms, embedded in an intuitive 3D AR application. The attached images show the system concept.

The target for our initial deployment of the system is level 3 and 4 trauma centers. These centers must often serve areas spanning hundreds and even thousands of miles; however, they are typically understaffed and underequipped. Using our system, a novice operator will be able to receive guidance information on the AR display, and triage patients based on the automatic detection of pooled blood.

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