Figure 1: Medical Images App
Figure 1 is a photosharing social media app that has been described as “Instagram for physicians”. In a broad sense it is, but it is also more. Figure 1 is an online community not only for physicians but also for other health professionals who might find medical image sharing a useful tool in their practices: nurses, PA’s, medical and nursing students. The app is free and is available for both Apple products as well as Android devices.
Figure 1 is a crowd-sourced product; users can upload and share photos from their clinical practice, ask questions, and post educational comments. Health professionals can discuss clinical cases and treatment options all while maintaining patient privacy. The app provides automatic face blocking and in-app privacy release forms. The in-app photo editor allows users to crop images and add arrows that draw attention to specific locations in the image (iMedicalApp.com). The app categorizes images into 2 brows-able lists: Anatomy (eg. Aorta, reproductive organs, spleen, etc) and Specialty (eg. Rheumatology, Plastic Surgery, Oncology, etc.). Not sure what an ACL rupture looks like through a laparoscope? Check the app. Never seen squamous cell carcinoma? Check the app. Wonder what the damage a self inflicted gun shot wound to the head looks like on xray? Check the app. According to the notes on Figure 1, it also “searches a list of approved medical websites for images.” Although, I could not find the list of approved websites documented anywhere.
iMedicalApps.com gives Figure 1 high marks with comments like “careful attention paid to its custom interface and fluid user experience”. “Submitting a photo is no more difficult than doing so in Instagram, and the privacy features (automatic face detection and blocking) and editing features (adding arrow markers, cropping) all work without a hitch.” Beware however, these images are not copyright free. Figure 1′s Terms of Service prohibit sharing screenshots of Figure 1 images on other venues.