Going Digital On A Budget: From Workbench Tinkering to Global Digital Innovation

By: Cade M Wilson, DVM

A little more than a decade ago, I started down a path of digital microscopy in a way that very few have considered. You see, I am a small animal veterinarian in the middle of the United States in a town most of you have never heard of, however, a little outside of the box thinking changed the way I look at and now use a traditional microscope. In my veterinary practice, we utilize our microscopes dozens of times per day.

Evaluating for parasites, urinalysis, cytology samples, and biopsy samples is an ever changing landscape that I evaluate for my patients. The way I evaluate these, and document findings changed the day I looked outside of my practice and into the toolbox that I use for my hobbies.  When not at my veterinary practice, I am an active outdoorsman and love viewing and filming wildlife. Most of my wildlife filming is done using binoculars and/or spotting scopes, my iPhone, and a phone case made by the outdoor company, Phoneskope.

I decided one day to tinker around on my workbench and create an attachment for the Phoneskope case that would allow me the same ease of use for my microscope that I enjoy with my binoculars. This set took me down a development trail that I am still on today.  That first microscope adapter may not have been that attractive, but it worked very well. Suddenly, I had a steady platform to document pictures and videos for my electronic patient files, right through my smartphone.  This setup also made it much easier to train my staff and educate my clientele.

As time went along more and more applications became obvious. The ability to use interfaces like Facetime, Zoom, Google Meets, and WhatsApp for live consultations through my phone and microscope became a game changer for efficiency, pathology, and specialty care consultations. At times, I felt like I had a superpower my peers did not have. The next step was client education of diseases, parasites, and disorders we saw locally and could share through several social media outlets. This is where the story took a big step. Through social media, the people behind Phoneskope and I became friends and before you knew it, business partners in Skoped Micro.

Skoped Micro utilizes the same phone case used for Phoneskope’s outdoor applications but instead of being geared to meet the harsh environment of the wilderness has a microscope adapter for microscopes that utilize eyepieces in the 23mm and 30mm sizes.  This step took my smartphone/microscope stabile platform out of my veterinary office and into places I never dreamed of.

Currently, we have units on oil drilling platforms to evaluate drilling sediment while on site, in middle and high school classrooms used to Bluetooth to smart board for education, in veterinary offices on every continent outside of Antarctica, in pathology offices, in universities for research, and on people’s microscopes for picture and video fun that you might just have seen before.

I love seeing people get creative and use my product for a seemingly endless number of applications. Since beginning Skoped Micro, all I have ever wanted in this is to ease the transition into digital microscopy for the masses. Skoped Micro does this by the easiest means possible, by using a microscope you use and the phone in your pocket. If you have been thinking about wading into the world of digital microscopy and using a traditional microscope, maybe Skoped Micro is an easy starting point.  We would love to help you and I am always interested in how we can work with and help others!

Cade Wilson, DVM CPT

Cade Wilson, DVM CPT

At Skoped Micro we take your microscope usage and abilities to the next level by the easiest of means. Skoped Micro’s patented smart phone/microscope attachment allows you to visualize, collect and share videos or photos through your microscope. Whether collecting imagery and videos for yourself or sharing your view live with others for real-time teaching, consultation or research directly through the microscope you already own and the smart phone in your pocket! www.skopedmicro.com

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