Image Number 2 for United States Patent #7273452.
A disposable imaging catheter that produces high resolution, color images comparable to those obtained from an endoscope. The device may also be made to function as a guidewire. The device may also include a sheath which slides over the catheter body for stiffening and which may include a working channel for accepting interventional devices, as well as LEDs to illuminate the field of view. The vision catheter system includes a detector assembly, scanning mechanism, and distal objective lens. In one embodiment, a photodetector is mated to a lens/pinhole assembly that allows the detector to read light from a small discrete point. This assembly is then scanned in raster or spiral patterns via electric wire coils that actuate a magnetic scan plate to read the area of interest. By adding a fixed objective lens, such as an aspheric lens that is attached to the distal tip of the catheter body, the field of view or acceptance angle of the system is magnified, yielding a wide angle image similar to that commonly obtained from an endoscope.