Spec-U-Hold ear piece demonstrated on a 3D printed model of a pediatric ear. Spec-U-Hold is used to hold the ear specula in place throughout otolaryngology procedures, and can be used in combination with LED-paired loupes to perform the same function as an operative otoscope.
Throughout the many years of technological growth, little has been done to improve upon the traditional otoscope. Operative otoscopes allow for light to enter into the ear speculum without physically obstructing tools that are used to remove foreign bodies or earwax from the ears. These otoscopes are big, bulky, and dim and require doctors to look in with only one eye. Often, doctors will have to switch back and forth between operative and standard otoscopes as a result of the poor visibility in the operative tool. The present project seeks to resolve the frustrations of frequent otoscope users, and allow for better visibility, tool usability, and functionality of the otoscope. We have completely reimagined what the otoscope is and broke it down all the way to its bare bones. Our design utilizes a device that every ENT has in their tool kit: loupes. Loupes are magnifying glasses that come with an LED light attachment, which will now be used as the magnification and light source for the new operative otoscope. We are optimizing the use of these loupes by creating an attachment that flips the light source upside down, centering it between the eyes. To hold the specula in the ear, we’ve designed this over-the-ear component, called the Spec-U-Hold, that is moldable in order to fit a variety of patient ear sizes while maintaining specula positioning. The combination of these two devices is a complete improvement of the operative otoscope as it is lighter, brighter, and hands-free. It allows doctors to use tools, manage the patient, and reach for any other necessary tools or devices throughout a procedure. Most importantly, this completely optimizes visibility, eliminating the need for switching back and forth between otoscopes during a procedure, and therefore decreasing the amount of time each procedure takes.
Michael Bassiri-Tehrani, MD
New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mt. Sinai, Beth Israel Mt. Sinai
Mount Sinai Medical Center