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  Table of Contents  
Year : 2017  |  Volume : 8  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 485-486  

Development of a simple smartphone adapter for digital photomicrography

1 Department of Physiology, MKCG Medical College, Ganjam, Odisha, India
2 Department of Physiology, Medical College and Hospital, Kolkata, West Bengal, India

Date of Web Publication14-Nov-2017

Correspondence Address:
Himel Mondal
Department of Physiology, MKCG Medical College, Ganjam, Odisha - 760 004
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/idoj.IDOJ_33_17

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How to cite this article:
Mondal H, Mondal S, Das D. Development of a simple smartphone adapter for digital photomicrography. Indian Dermatol Online J 2017;8:485-6

How to cite this URL:
Mondal H, Mondal S, Das D. Development of a simple smartphone adapter for digital photomicrography. Indian Dermatol Online J [serial online] 2017 [cited 2020 Sep 23];8:485-6. Available from: http://www.idoj.in/text.asp?2017/8/6/485/218332

In 2008, Bellina and Missoni described a free-hand method to capture images from microscope using a smartphone.[1] In 2013, Morrison and Gardner described a similar conceptually simple free-hand method to stabilize smartphones while focusing on the image.[2] Most difficult aspect of free-hand digital photomicrography is the stabilization of smartphones.[3] Smartphone adapters for digital photomicrography are available to overcome this difficulty.[4] However, these adapters are costly and not available in many countries. In 2016, Singaravel and Aleem described a simple low-cost adapter for photomicrography.[5] However, the adapter had some limitations. Hence, we intended to develop a widely acceptable, technically sound, low-cost, and easy to make simple smartphone adapter for digital photomicrography (sSADP).

   Methods of Making the Adapter Top

Empty soft drink aluminum can was held on the left hand and a small hole was made with the help of a hacksaw blade [Figure 1]. One blade of scissors was introduced into the can and it was cut circumferentially, vertically, and circumferentially again to obtain a rectangular sheet of aluminum. The breadth of the aluminum was cut according to the height of the eyepiece. Then, the aluminum sheet was placed around the eye piece of the microscope and an adhesive tape was applied to fix the rolled sheet. Thus, a cylinder was made. After that, a piece of cardboard was taken from scrap packaging material. The cylinder was kept on the cardboard and a circle was marked surrounding the cylinder on the cardboard with a pencil. A compass was used to mark the center of the circle. A smaller circle was drawn according to the circular shape of the camera glass of the smartphone and was cut off. Then, the aluminum cylinder was attached to the drawn circle on the cardboard with an instant adhesive.
Figure 1: Serial photographs of procedure of making the sSADP. *Coca-cola® is the registered trademark of the Coca-Cola Company. We do not promote the company in any form

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   Procedure of Photomicrography Top

The smartphone was placed on the cardboard, opposite to the side of the attached cylinder. The position of the smartphone camera lens was confirmed on the center of the small hole by looking through the cylinder. Left index finger and left thumb were used to stabilize the phone with the cardboard on the left side [Figure 2]. Right index finger and right small finger were used to stabilize the phone with cardboard on the right side. Right thumb was used to click the capture button on smartphone screen. Keeping the sSADP and smartphone together, the cylinder of the sSADP was advanced on the microscope eyepiece to the farthest lower position. A small illuminated area appeared on the smartphone screen. Then, the sSADP and phone was slowly moved upward to get a clear image on the screen and the image was captured. These images had a black background surrounding the circular field, as shown in the left column images in [Figure 3]. With the same settings, the camera was set at 2.5 × digital zoom and the same procedure was followed, and the captured images are shown on the right column of images in [Figure 3].
Figure 2: Recommended position of fingers for photomicrography aided with sSADP for a right-handed person

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Figure 3: Images captured from the microscope by 16 MP smartphone camera (Flash-Off, ISO-Automatic, White balance-Automatic). Right column images were taken with 2.5 × digital zoom. (a) Liver tissue; (b) Cardiac muscle; (c) Longitudinal section of skin (Images were transferred from mobile to personal computer and cropped from 16:9 to 4:3 ratio without any edit or enhancement)

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Developed with virtually zero cost this easy to make sSADP can be used in settings where advanced microscope with image capture facility is not available.

Financial support and sponsorship


Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

   References Top

Bellina L, Missoni E. Mobile cell-phones (M-phones) in telemicroscopy: Increasing connectivity of isolated laboratories. Diagn Pathol 2009;4:19.  Back to cited text no. 1
Morrison AS, Gardner JM. Smart phone microscopic photography: A novel tool for physicians and trainees. Arch Pathol Lab Med 2014;138:1002.  Back to cited text no. 2
Maude RJ, Koh GCKW, Silamut K. Taking Photographs with a Microscope. Am J Trop Med Hyg 2008;79:471-2.  Back to cited text no. 3
Roy S, Pantanowitz L, Amin M, Seethala RR, Ishtiaque A, Yousem SA, et al. Smartphone adapters for digital photomicrography. J Pathol Inform 2014;5:24.  Back to cited text no. 4
[PUBMED]  [Full text]  
Singaravel S, Aleem MA. Hands-free: A Low-Cost Adapter for Smartphone Microscopic Photography Using a Cardboard Toilet-Paper Roll. Arch Pathol Lab Med 2016;140:741-3.  Back to cited text no. 5


  [Figure 1], [Figure 2], [Figure 3]


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