Built primarily to function with Envisionier’s endogo and endogo HD portable endoscopic camera systems, the eGoWorks manager software and accompanying app facilitate online data storage and collaboration for endoscopists. Here we review eGoWorks from Envisionier Medical Technologies, an intriguing tool that facilitates data storage, management, and sharing by endoscopists.
In this review, we will first discuss Envisionier and their endogo systems, then examine the eGoWorks manager software and its features, and finally we will consider the eGoWorks app and its capabilities.
Based out of Woodstock, GA, Envisionier was founded by Dr. Patrick Melder, a practicing otolaryngologist and former chief of ENT at Walter Reed Medical Center. Awards on Envisionier’s website include the Maryland Incubator Company of the Year in 2009 and the Young StartUp Ventures Top Innovator Award.
Its flagship products include the endogo and endogo HD portable endoscopic systems (pictures to the left), which represent, to our knowledge, the first forays into portable hand-held, battery-operated endoscopic video cameras (that connect to most rigid and flexible scopes).
Without having handled and used the actual endogo systems, we cannot comment on their quality and ease of use, but we can clearly see the utility of portability compared to the traditional tower- or cart-based systems when it comes to endoscopy. This review will be focused on the software side of these tools, including the iPhone app
We first explore the eGoWorks manager desktop software, to which endoscopists can easily upload videos and images from the endogo endoscopy systems, or from other sources, if the files are readily available. Once logged into the web-based software (shown below), the user can select a patient to review all of his/her applicable reports, videos, and images (easily identifiable from the icons in lower-left corner of each file).
Features of this manager software – but not necessarily the app, as explained below, include: filing endoscopic exams by demographic characteristics, generating reports by choosing and annotating still images (and then printing the reports), video editing and image adjusting, and online sharing of endoscopic video and images via a secure, HIPAA-compliant environment. A compare feature allows for the side-to-side juxtaposition of multiple images or videos for easy visual comparison. The software also allows for flagging and collecting videos or images as favorites, a neat way to collect examples of normalcy and pathology for showing and teaching patients or medical trainees. Images can also be adjusted in terms of sharpness, hue, saturation, brightness, and color offset.
The software also features some basic video editing capabilities (shown below), including trimming video (the scissors icon) and extracting still images from video (the circle-containing folder icon). Moreover, the “Share” button near the top-left corner of the screen allows for the sharing of a link to desired videos/images via e-mail to patients, referring/consulting physicians, or other colleagues.
The app itself (shown below) has more limited capabilities compared to the manager software, but the two automatically sync.
Log-in reveals a list of patients with a search bar (shown below), somewhat similar to the manager software.
Clicking on a patient brings up a list of his/her associated videos, images, and reports (shown below). The “Capture” button in the top-right corner allows for the addition and upload of files to the selected patient from the smartphone camera or existing albums (with intriguing potential for GI tract-associated skin lesions, for example).
Clicking on a particular file brings up the report, video, or image (shown below). The app allows for the sharing of a file (“Share” button in the top-right corner) via e-mail link, similarly as discussed earlier for the manager software.
The endogo and endogo HD systems represent intriguing advancements in endoscopy, though we have limited ability to comment on the hardware. The associated eGoWorks manager software and eGoWorks app appear to be useful, functional supplements to the endogo systems. Obviously, the endogo systems in conjunction with the web-based software should allow for the minimization of the usual cart-based systems, especially useful for portable endoscopy (for scoping ICU patients, for example). For physicians with multiple practice locations, or for the ability to access a file right before hitting the operating room, the web-based access appears very useful. Moreover, Envisionier reports the ability to integrate data acquired with the endogo systems with many EMR’s, though we did not have a chance to attempt any data integration. The majority of current endogo systems users are otolaryngologists, though Envisionier reports increasing numbers of urologists, gynecologists, and gastroenterologists joining the user ranks.
Focusing more on the manager software and app, the sharing functions (available through both the software and the app, through which users can e-mail links to reports/videos/images to patients and other physicians) represent a valuable enhancement to physician-patient and physician-physician communication. The compare functions (only available through the software, not through the app) can allow for the physician to quickly and conveniently review past and present exams with patients, potentially enhancing compliance with lifestyle recommendations and/or medications. The ability to generate reports (only software, not the app) with annotated still images and print them, as well as the ability to flag images as favorites for models of normalcy or pathology for teaching purposes, also appear useful.
The eGoWorks manager software and app are included for free with the purchase of the endogo (first-generation, list price $7500) or endogo HD (list price $12900) systems. If not an endogo system user, there is a $1000 one-time account fee (that includes 5 GB of storage space and two user accounts, with an additional $1 monthly fee for every 1 GB beyond 5 GB) for the eGoWorks software and app.
-Ability to share links to videos/images with other physicians/patients
-Compare function (on software) allows for seeing videos/images side-by-side
-Seamless syncing between endogo systems and the manager software, and between the software and the app
Dislikes/Future Updates I’d Love to See:
-No video editing, image adjusting, or report generating features on app (must use eGoWorks manager software)
-Integrated tightly with endogo, but less robust (and very expensive!) with other systems (manual uploading of images/video)
The eGoWorks software and app represent powerful, well-integrated (and free) adjuncts for endogo sytems users, but appear somewhat cumbersome and rather expensive for non-endogo systems endoscopists. A definite thumbs-up for endogo systems users, but we find it difficult to recommend the software and app for physicians that use other endoscopy systems.
Acknowledgments: A big thanks to Jeremy Brooks, the Senior Software Developer at Envisionier, who was kind enough to take the time to coach me through a training tutorial for the eGoWorks manager software and app and answer my questions.