Pachymeter

Everything there is to know about a pachymeter

A pachymeter is medical equipment that measures the thickness of the cornea, a transparent window-like tissue in the front of the eye. It uses light waves, laser, or ultrasound to measure the distance between the front and the end of the cornea. Ophthalmologists use it to examine ocular conditions. For instance, measurement with a pachymeter can provide detailed information about glaucoma in the cornea, which is an optic disease associated with high eye pressure. 

History of pachymeters

"Pachymetry" comes from the Greek word "pachos" meaning thick and "metry" meaning measure. In the medical term, it means the measurement of the thickness of the cornea. It inspects the corneal barrier and endothelial pump functions. There was a time when people were unable to measure the thickness of their cornea, and in those cases, they could lose their eyesight.        

The first discovery of the cornea's thickness was by a physiologist on the physiological optic (Helmholtz, Gullstrand). Studies of physiological interests continued in the 1950s by David Maurice, and for almost the next 50 years, this simple biological aspect remained under study. During this era, many discoveries came into being, which at the end led to the modern study of physiological optic and the invention of a pachymeter.

Indication to use

As mentioned above, a pachymeter is a handheld, battery-functioned ultrasonic gadget used to measure the thickness of the cornea. The pachymeter has now become the most commonly used device in the ophthalmic field. Although it is not harmful, it should only be used by a qualified professional, because mishandling or too much use of the device can be detrimental. 

General specifications 

The Measurement Range of this device is: 

Standard: 200 microns to 1100 microns

The accuracy of this device is:

Varies from ± 5-7 microns

Firmness: 

1 micron

Core Clock Accuracy: 

±0.001%-0.003>#/p###

Weight varies from model to model: 

3.6-5.8 Ounces

Power Requirement varies among models: 

Some use two batteries, and some use 12V DC current

Compatible Operating Systems with Pachymeter include:

Windows XP, Service Pack 3 or higher (32-bit)

Windows Vista, Service Pack 2 or newer (32-bit or 64-bit)

Windows 7 (32-bit or 64-bit)

Windows 8/8.1 (32-bit or 64-bit)

Types of pachymeters

Palm scan pachymeter

The palm scanner P2000 is a remarkable tool for measuring the cornea. It helps the user to measure the location of the cornea with impressive speed and accuracy. Unlike others in the market, it provides an accurate measurement by displaying the cornea's measured echogram, which helps to confirm the validity of the measurement. 

With its accurate measurement of 3 microns, the pachymeter is the most precise tool for measuring the cornea. This gadget comes with a high bandwidth of 50 MHz probes, setting it apart from the rest of the devices from its class. In its CCT mode, P2000 can measure the thickness of the cornea and calculate the adjusted IOP values based on that measurement.

Features:

  • It can do Peripheral and Central corneal Pachymetry
  • It has an average of 50 MHz Probe 
  • The sampling varies. The highest is 264 MHz 
  • They have Technology of Corneal Waveform 
  • This model has the highest accuracy.
  • It has a fast measurement rate.
  • It has the compatibility of EMR.
  • It generates pdf of every pachymetry report 

iPac® Pachymeter

The IPac body design is great for the users' comfort to operate the equipment for hours efficiently. Its tip contains a sensor that measures the thickness of the cornea. The process and analysis of each waveform produced from each measurement of the cornea thickness in the eye is built into the body of this electronic gadget. All the measurements become displayed on the light-emitting diode. Also, it uses a rechargeable battery that consists of lithium ions.

Features:

  • Easy to use
  • Portable: it weighs 3.53oz, and it is rechargeable
  • Versatile
  • Bluetooth technology
  • OLED color display: it provides a graphical display for more comfortable use.

PachPen® Pachymeter

This device has most of the features for the ease of finding accurate and enhanced results. This device resembles a pen, and its nib is its sensor. The pachymeter has easy to use buttons and a straightforward, user-friendly interface. This device is reliable, and the most important thing about this tool is that it is built with an upgradeable software feature. This makes the device up to date and improves its performance with every update. 

Features:

Some of its features are as follows:

  • It has a multi-segment, high-resolution display with buttons that enable user interference.
  • It has a long-lasting lithium battery for long usage.
  • Its weight of 85g and small size makes it a perfectly portable device.
  • Its Ergonomic design makes it a comfortable fit in your hand.
  • This device provides user control over the swiftness of sound.
  • It displays measured corneal thickness, entered IOP, corrected IOP, and average of all the measurements taken by the user. 
  • The pachymeter automatically takes up to 9 readings at a time. It shows the user the average reading so that there would be no error in the result.

AccuPach VI Pachymeter

The device provides remarkable accuracy by boosting the unique digital signal analysis. It has a built-in IOP conversion feature, which makes it easy and quick to calculate the IOP.

Features:

  • It can easily connect with the computer or printer with its USB memory stick
  • This gadget is very user friendly; it has a touch screen feature, making it easy to learn and very simple to use.
  • It has an adjustable handle, enabling it to be operated from different angles.
  • Its digital waveform analysis feature makes sure that the measurements are aligned correctly.
  • It has an optional keyboard feature, which makes it easy to enter data with accuracy.
  • It has a high-quality audio output that makes it easy for the doctor to concentrate on the patient and understand the output by listening to the voice.
  •  In just a few seconds, it provides the accurate converted IOP.

How to use a pachymeter

  • Ask the patient to look at a fixed point, not to move their eyes during the examination. They should fully open their eyes for the procedure.
  • Hold the gadget like a pencil in a way to make contact with the cornea of the patient. In normal corneas, central corneal contact is recommended. The sensor and the cornea should only be in contact for a short time. The gadget should not force any additional pressure, as any additional pressure will damage the patient's eye.
  • Support the pachymeter with your hand. If required, the operator should adjust his or her hand with the face of the patient. This would help to minimize the movement of the gadget.
  • Now start the device (it will begin to record the measurement) and wait for the final beep or any other stopping signal.
  • Try to minimize the time and pressure exerted on the eye during the measurement, as this could render the reading or cause injury.
  • After the pachymeter has shown the signal of completing the measurement, remove the gadget.
  • Now the device will show the reading.

The complications of using the instrument

  • This device is highly sensitive. Even slight damage to the device can cause malfunctioning of the device
  • A weak battery can alter the result of the measurement.
  • If this tool is not handled by a professional, it can cause eye injury.

Conclusion

A pachymeter is a revolutionary product as it opened a new era, with ease in measuring a cornea's thickness. This device could be beneficial for every human. The best thing is that this device has become portable, and the doctor can carry it to the patient if the patient is unable to visit the hospital. This device can operate with any computer, so it is straightforward to use and very user-friendly. Thus, a new operator can quickly master it in no time.