Thermal Imaging based diagnosis for Dermatological Diseases

Ashu Sharma

Research work in the fast-emerging field of IT and Computer Science are going on the 52-year Jammu University is going apace and it is a matter pride that some talented girls along with boys are doing commendable research work of far-reaching importance.
The Computer Science Department of JU is also doing a future-oriented research work with wide-ranging applications and significant implication. I am doing a pioneer research on the important topic related to \Dermatological diseases which are the most prevalent across the globe and our findings will lead to fruitful results through findings and usefully change the situation through deep study of this vital subject.
Despite the prevalence, the diagnosis of such diseases is extremely difficult and necessitates extensive experience in the field. According to a study, 24 percent of the population consults their general practitioner (GP) with a skin problem once a year.
Our department with proper infra-structure and highly expert and experienced faculty has been engaged in achieving excellence in various significant research areas by our “high talented and motivated youth”.
It may be mentioned that I am earnestly working on this research work under noble guidance of Prof Pawanesh Abrol, Head, Department of Computer Science & IT, University of Jammu and also co-guidance of Prof Praveen Kumar Lehana, Head Department of Electronics, JU.
According to a survey, skin diseases were the world’s fourth leading cause of nonfatal disease burden, and three of the world’s most common diseases were skin diseases. People in India, particularly in rural and small towns, are not largely concerned about skin disease and do not seek treatment from a dermatologist at the outset. Utility of my work is very vital indeed.
Unfortunately, dermatologists are scarce in most rural areas and the people are generally treated by paramedical staff at primary health care, community health centers, and referral hospitals. Many dermatological diseases (skin ailments) like: bacterial infections, fungal infections, eczema, and scabies, share many characteristics. As a result, diagnosing these diseases at an early stage by a non-dermatologist is extremely difficult. Skin disease can have a significant impact on patient’s quality of life. According to research, patients with primary skin diseases such as psoriasis, alopecia areata, and vitiligo are more likely to experience mental health issues such as anxiety and depression.
Thermal Imaging: Present research is primarily based on thermal images, helpful in detecting the skin diseases at the very earliest stage even before the occurrence of disease. Thermal images will be used to study other ailments where skin temperature can reflect the presence of inflammation in underlying tissues or where blood flow is increased or decreased due to clinical irregularity. Currently, many physicians use thermal imaging cameras to detect a number of medical conditions, such as arthritis, repetitive strain injury, muscular pain, and circulatory problems.
Thermal imaging camera detects infrared radiations produced from an item and produces a thermal profile of the scene while regular camera takes photographs from visible light. Infrared thermography is a very convenient, fast, reliable, non-contact and cost-effective method. It is a form of technology that has a wide range of applications over time. In medical domain, thermal imaging can help professionals to discover numerous disorders by detecting hot and cold regions on their bodies. Doctors can forecast joints, vascular, and skin disease based on this information. Besides, medical domain thermal camera has variety of applications. Thermal imaging can help veterinary professionals discover numerous disorders in animals by detecting hot and cold regions on their bodies. Animal doctors can forecast joints, vascular, and skin disease based on this information. For leakage detection, like leaks from a gas pipeline can be detected using a thermal imaging camera. During inspection of civil structure thermal imaging can be extremely beneficial in detecting the strength, cracks, and leakage in the buildings, roads and bridges which can be helpful in saving many lives from accidents. Thermal camera becomes an indispensable tool for firefighters because of their ability to isolate points of interests from noise. In other words, thermal imagers help the firemen to see beyond the thick cloud of smoke and reveal what’s behind it. This is a great help in finding people trapped inside a building or to identify an entry point for a rescue that has a relatively low temperature.
Thermal imaging in medical applications is particularly useful in detecting disease in human body. Every organ of the human body maintains a constant temperature. Thermal imaging can identify any abnormalities in the temperature of any organ, which is useful in the detection of various diseases. The use of thermal imaging to diagnose disease early can help with treatment.
Thermal and imaging cameras used for collecting images of the patients are costly but very useful to detect infrared radiation from the object and can see through darkness or smoke. Thermal imagers measure the surface temperature. The Imager can save images to internal memory, to a memory card, or to a USB storage device. The imager includes Smart View software which is a high-performance, professional software suitable for quality analysis and reporting. The imager also works with the Fluke Connect app devices. The objective of the research is to explore the thermal dermatology images for identifications of the disease.
The present research takes visual images as well as infrared/thermal images as input, and pre-processing operations are performed in order to enhance the Image. After pre-processing feature extraction is carried by different techniques. The expected result of the present research would be a framework for the analysis of dermatological diseases based on infrared/thermal images. Present research primarily on thermal images shall be helpful in detecting the skin diseases at the very earliest stage even before the occurrence of disease. It can also help the dermatologist in accurate and well-timed diagnosis of dermatological diseases.
While Prof. Pawnesh Abrol and Prof. Parveen Kumar- are playing crucial role, all the scholars must be provided proper guidance and working environ for fruitful and optimal research findings of world-class quality for usefulness of the humanity. The JU higher authorities should accord top priority to explore the talent of younger generation on the scientific, technology and all fields of human activities to bring excellence in JU and bring more benefits to upscale the life of the people through innovations and other steps..
(The writer is a research scholar in
Computer Sciences Deptt. JU).

editorial article
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