Bausch + Lomb, IBM to develop an iOS app for cataract surgeons

IBM - Bausch Lomb partnership

Global eye health company Bausch + Lomb and IBM are working together to develop what they say is the “first app of its kind for iPhone and iPad” for surgeons who perform cataract surgery. Once it’s released, the application will help surgeons streamline their workflow by delivering patient information and clinical insights, as well as intraocular lens (IOL) options on a single, digital platform at the point of care.

More precisely, the app will remove various print-outs and/or notes created during pre-op patient office visits, and store that information on IBM Cloud Platform, Bluemix, from where it could be accessed by surgeons whenever it’s needed.

Pilot study testing for the new application is expected to begin in late 2016.The MobileFirst for iOS team, which is part of IBM Global Business Services, will design and develop this custom app for Bausch + Lomb. Further, the Big Blue will put its cognitive computing technology to work, adding machine-based learning and predictive analytics to the mix, to deliver real-time insights to surgeons.

“By combining IBM’s advanced data management capabilities with Apple’s innovative app ecosystem and our clinical expertise, we are working to provide surgeons with a convenient, personalized tool that helps them better manage and access patient profiles digitally, and provide personalized IOL options,” Andy Chang, senior vice president and general manager of U.S. Surgical, Bausch + Lomb, said in a statement. “This unique relationship demonstrates Bausch + Lomb’s unwavering commitment to being a driving force in the ophthalmology industry by developing novel solutions that address the unmet needs of our customers and their patients.”

According to Bausch + Lomb, by compiling each cataract patient’s information in the app — including IOL calculations, corneal topography and other biometry results as well as lifestyle preferences — surgeons and their staff may generate an integrated profile to help them facilitate IOL selection and procedure planning. Historical surgical data and other patient insights can also be housed within the app to potentially support positive clinical outcomes for future cataract.

“Allowing this mobile platform to organize and essentialize the numerous data sets that cataract surgeons must tackle with each case will also allow for refinement over time for each individual surgeon,” Anil Shivaram, M.D., from Claremont Eye Associates in Claremont, CA, said in a statement. “By capturing, displaying, and analyzing the data over time in an iterative process, this app is expected to help surgeons provide better care and potentially help provide improved surgical outcomes, while at the same time increasing their efficiency.”

Pilot study testing for the new application is expected to begin in late 2016.

Cataracts affect more than 22 million Americans and that number is expected to rise to 30 million by 2020.