By Riley Kaminer

Let’s talk about that bump that you’ve had for a little while now. You know that little one that’s probably nothing. Or is it?

The problem: it’s often a tad tricky to tell just how benign – or not – a skin condition is until it’s too late. Meanwhile, around one in five Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetime, adding up to almost 10,000 new diagnoses every single day.

Of course, we tech people know that the answer often lies in the data. That’s difficult in this case though, since there aren’t any great ways of keeping track of what’s going on with your skin.

Photogrammetry is one solution. In layman’s terms, photogrammetry is taking a bunch of pictures of an object, then using those pictures to create a 3D model of that object on a computer.

Current photogrammetry technology dermatologists use is severely limited, as only rarely do they own or have access to the $400,000 systems required to run the tests – or the time to do them in a profitable way. And when they do, it can cost patients $400 or $500, and insurance typically only covers a small portion of that amount.

Boca Raton-based Triangulate Labs has developed a solution they call Skinmap. The platform turns a doctor’s iPhone into an affordable, accessible and accurate system for total body photography.

“Dermatologists only see 10% of the population that’s at high risk for skin cancer,” Triangulate Labs co-founder and CEO William D. Hall told Refresh Miami. “And dermatologists do much better than the population at finding and recognizing skin cancers, but even they have trouble sometimes.” Ultimately, that means cancer can end up getting missed or identified too late, while some doctors biopsy a lesion unnecessarily.

Hall [pictured above], who has three degrees (including a PhD) from MIT, was determined to find a solution. After some research, he realized that the origin of the problem is to catch these cancers while they are emerging using photogrammetry. His second realization was that the modern cell phones are capable of capturing images that are sufficiently high quality for dermatological purposes.

Triangulate Labs was awarded a patent in March for its AI-powered system that figures out how all the pixels from all the different pictures map onto the skin to create a 3D avatar. This creates a baseline, which doctors can then compare during follow-up appointments to see the differences in how your skin looks.

Skinmap has just started to be deployed in its first dermatology clinic. “We originally projected that we’d have about two skinmaps a day per dermatologist, but we’re seeing 20 to 25, which is awesome,” said Hall. These skinmaps cost a fraction of the cost of traditional photogrammetry, with doctors charging around $50 per session and Triangulate Labs receiving $20 of that.

Now, the five-person team is working to get Skinmap into more dermatologists’ hands. Later, the team will allow other healthcare providers to use Skinmap to collaborate with the dermatologists. That’s important, Hall noted, since “there are 50 million people in the US who don’t live in a county with a dermatologist, and that puts them at double the risk of death from skin cancer.”


Link to original article here.


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