Are You Ready To Trust An iPhone App For Skin Cancer Diagnosis?

The cameras on our smartphones have come a lonnnnnng way. In fact, many people rely on their iPhones as the primary device for non-professional photography. But are these cameras yet good enough, clear and color-accurate enough, to trust when the results could literally be a matter of life or death?

The University of Michigan has released a free iPhone app, UMSkinCheck, "intended for skin cancer self exam and surveillance." 23 different, strategic self-shots — in the nude! — comprise the full-body photographic library that is stored in the app. It also allows you to "track detected moles/lesions, access informational videos and literature, and fill out a melanoma risk calculator."

Obviously, this app does intend to replace the need for a professional medical exam. And it's certainly a great concept. But is smartphone technology — cameras, to be precise — there yet? [The Atlantic]


    No. Dermatology is highly variable and requires judgement of the entire body in comparison to the suspected cancer. It also varies with race and skin colour.

    No way.
    Not yet about to trust my life to a low cost general public device.
    When / IF they start using them in hospitals where liability is a real issue and accuracy is a financial concern as well, THEN maybe..
    They'll take things a lot more seriously if large sums of payouts are concerned for wrong diagnoses rather than merely people dying as a result of a dodgy bit of software on a dodgy bit of kit.

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