Dr. Benjamin Levi isn’t content with just fixing things. An assistant professor of surgery and director of the Burn, Wound, and Regenerative Medicine Lab, he’s a classic surgeon-scientist, conducting research to improve the fixes.
A recent paper in Wound Repair and Regeneration shared findings from a study by Dr. Levi and colleagues that showed a short-wave infrared (SWIR) camera could accurately assess tissue viability after a burn injury. The camera made the assessments by measuring tissue moisture after different severities of burns.
The method provides a more rapid, less invasive and more accurate way to evaluate burns so that surgeons can make more informed, objective decisions about courses of treatment: Whether to debride tissue, to let tissue heal on its own or some combination of both. It also points to potentially better outcomes; current approaches to assessing burn depth and severity result in misdiagnosis of injury depth in more than 40 percent of cases.
Here are some key questions about the study and takeaways from the findings.