Scientists develop eye-reading camera test to diagnose mental illness

Eye test

British scientists have developed a camera test that can diagnose a range of serious mental illnesses by analyzing the eye movements of patients.

A century-old theory of abnormal "seeing" paved the way for the new test, which is being vetted now.

Monitoring eye movements

The test involves a camera that watches the patient's eyes as he or she looks at pictures on a computer screen. Patients with schizophrenia, for example, will make fewer eye movements and focuses, as they tend to not explore images as closely as do those without schizophrenia. Patients with bipolar disorder and depression have similar tendencies, though not as pronounced.

The company behind the technology hopes to have it on the market in Europe and then the United States within the next few years. It is currently undergoing human study in Europe in hopes of clearing its first hurdle towards approval there.

The test currently shows a 95 percent accuracy rate within 30 minutes of use. This testing tool could eliminate years of diagnosis requirements, allowing patients more advanced testing, faster diagnosis times and earlier treatment options.


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