Mobile thermography

  • Research type

    Research Study

  • Full title

    Is baseline clinic mobile thermography representative of laboratory based cold challenge data?



  • Contact name

    Andrea Murray

  • Contact email

  • Sponsor organisation

    University of Manchester

  • Identifier

    N/A, N/A

  • Duration of Study in the UK

    1 years, 0 months, 0 days

  • Research summary

    Raynaud's phenomenon (RP) means episodic colour change of the extremities (e.g. fingers and toes), usually in response to cold exposure. RP can either be primary (occurring without known cause, effecting 5% of the population) or secondary (as a result of a connective tissue disease, especially systemic sclerosis).

    Non-invasive techniques such as thermography (measuring the surface temperature of the skin using a thermal imaging camera) can help to differentiate between primary and secondary RP. Thermography is currently used to investigate RP in specialist hospital settings. Non-specialist hospitals may refer their patients to specialist centres for further assessment, but this is an added inconvenience for patients.

    Specialist centres perform thermography under temperature-controlled laboratory conditions to optimise conditions for interpreting the image data. Non-specialist centres would benefit from being able to do a more basic version of thermography in the outpatient clinic. However, we do not currently know whether this would be adversely affected by variations in clinic room temperatures or whether these data would be related to the data obtained in a standard laboratory based cold challenge.

    The objective of this study is to compare images taken in the outpatient clinic to those obtained in a temperature-controlled laboratory in the same patients.

    If there was a good comparison, non-specialist centres may benefit from being able to do a more basic version of thermography in the outpatient clinic in the future.

    Patient’s over 18 years of age being investigated for systemic sclerosis or primary RP would be eligible. The study would involve one visit (approximately 60-90 minutes). This would coinciding with their clinic visit and take place alongside their clinically diagnostic thermography/cold challenge assessment. They would additionally have thermography images collected in outpatients using a mobile device and complete a short feasibility questionnaire . Study visits would be conducted at Salford Royal Hospital.

  • REC name

    Wales REC 4

  • REC reference


  • Date of REC Opinion

    21 Dec 2023

  • REC opinion

    Further Information Favourable Opinion