Endoscopes are the instruments used to examine the interior of a hollow organ or cavity of bodies. Developing from early rigid endoscopes and the later fiber-optic (flexible tube) endoscopes, nowadays electronic endoscopes have made a leap in terms of imaging quality. The clear images and ease of use brought by electronic endoscopes make diagnosis more accurate and faster, resulting in wide popularity amongst patients and medical staff.
An electronic endoscope is built with a light delivery system and an imaging system. Light delivery system is composed of a light controller, a power management, a LED cold light source and a driver. The light emitted by LED which is normally outside bodies is directed via a fiber-optic into bodies to illuminate the spot under inspection. Imaging system includes a lens, a CCD, an image processor, input/output units and a power supply. CCD amounted at front end of system converts the light reflected from mucous membranes of inspected spot into electric signals, which then are converted again into digital signals by analog front end. DSP will be working on these digital signals to produce color images and display them on a screen. If captured images need to travel a long way to reach DSP, LVDS could be a good option for high-speed data transmission.
Electronic endoscopes are developing toward miniaturized devices boasting multiple capabilities. A capsule endoscope, for example, has a diameter of only 11mm and transmits images through wireless connection. An ultrasonic endoscope, as its name indicates, is capable of generating ultrasonic waves to implement cross-sectional scan for targeted organs apart from mucous membrane inspection.