How to make a DIY Video Laryngoscope
Hi folks check out this fantastic FOAMEd contribution from Dr Jakob!
DISCLAIMER : Homemade devices such as described here should never be used in actual clinical practice with real patients without proper medical device testing and licensing appropriate to each country/state. The concept provided here is to stimulate discussion, debate and further areas of innovation. The device described can be used as a training device on mannikins to practice the technique of indirect laryngoscopy and intubation.
– Minh Le Cong ( Editors note)
This article has been peer reviwed by myself as Editor and Dr Nicholas Chrimes
My name is Jakob Mathiszig-Lee and I’m currently an FY2 working in Nottingham, UK (2nd year after med school). I’ve got an anaesthetic training post in Reading from August this year (shout out to my future colleagues) and I’ve got a wide range of interests from diving to pre-hospital care (I was part of Imperial College’s pre-hospital care programme pilot) and ITU. I’ve always enjoyed making things and think the best way to understand something is to work out how you’d build it.
How to make a DIY Video Laryngoscope.
So you’ve seen all those fancy airway devices at conferences and on your difficult airway trolley but you want to play with them at home? It’s surprisingly easy to make your own device and for relatively little money too. Version 2 of my DIY video laryngoscope gets you something with an integrated screen for £120 assuming you have to buy some tools, not bad in my opinion.
Video technology has evolved rapidly and through websites such as alibaba.com it is extremely easy to buy components intended to be used by manufacturers. In both versions of by video laryngoscope I’ve used a module (http://qbhscope.en.alibaba.com/product/1845841313-212867957/3_4mm_electronics_endoscope_moudle.html) based on a 320×240 camera that has been used in commercial airway devices. You don’t have to use that particular one and if desired can use one with a much higher resolution if you don’t mind the bigger size, it’ll all work the same so long as it doesn’t need a higher voltage supply.
All the complicated electronics are self-contained within these modules and they are supplied with the tricky soldering of wires to the board already done so it really is just a case of sorting out a battery supply and hooking it up at its most basic. The details are in the posters I’ve linked and if it seems like I’ve missed anything out it’s because it really is very simple. One thing I will stress though is planning everything out with a glass of wine in hand is enormously helpful.
The beauty with all of this is that it doesn’t have to be just laryngoscope. Fancy your own Bonfils or rigid stylet to practice with? Just get some pipe, bend and stick the camera at the end, the circuit is the same. What about video incorporated with other devices? The module I’ve used fits perfectly at the end of a bougie so long as you’ve got one that’s hollow if you cut the tip off.
My first attempt at this was my first go at an electronics project and although daunting at first I was pretty pleased with what I ended up with so get out there and have a go and let’s see what the #FOAMed community can come up with. At the moment I’m working on version 3 being fully 3D printed but it may be a while…