Hospital medical equipment - general information
Microscopes, light, laboratory
Microscopes, light, laboratory
Basic light microscope
Other common names: Laboratory microscopes; binocular microscopes
Health problem addressed
Microscopic analysis of blood cells helps diagnose infections
and allergies, leukemias, anemias, and other blood disorders.
Microscopic examinations can detect abnormal changes in cells
or tissues to differentiate benign, inflammatory, precancerous,
or malignant conditions. And, examinations of urinary sediment
are valuable in laboratory evaluation of kidney function. Selective
staining techniques can be used in microscopy to help identify
parasites, fungi, and bacteria.
Product description
The basic parts of a light microscope are the lens system (eyepieces,
objectives, and substage condenser), the body (observation
tubes with diopter adjustment, interpupillary adjustment, and
revolving nosepiece), the stage and stage controls, and the
illumination system. Most microscopes use Koehler illumination,
which requires a light source, a lamp condenser, an iris diaphragm,
a corrected substage condenser, and a first-surface mirror or
silvered right-angle prism.
Principles of operation
Objectives collect light from the light source and focus it to
produce a magnified image of the specimen on the opposite
side of the lens system. The eyepiece magnifies the image of
the specimen produced at the rear of the objective. The total
magnification equals the objective magnification multiplied by
the eyepiece magnification. The substage condenser focuses light
from the light source onto the specimen plane, supplying enough
convergent light for the microscope to achieve the full resolving
power of the objective. The stage, on which the specimen slide is
placed, is in the center of the microscope; the stage can be moved
in the X, Y, or Z direction. The microscope body also features a
revolving nosepiece on which the objectives (4 or 5) are mounted.
Various contrast methods enhance contrast and color in specimen
images, including darkfield, fluorescence, interference, phase, and
polarized-light methods. Many microscopes offer two or more
contrast method options.
User(s): Laboratory technician; physician
Maintenance: Biomedical engineering staff and/
or service contract with the manufacturer or
third-party organization; OEM servicers
Training: Initial training by manufacturer;
operator’s manuals; user’s guide
Environment of use
Settings of use: Clinical or research laboratory;
physician office; clinic; hospital
Requirements: Line power
Product specifications
Approx. dimensions (mm): [380-450] x [203820] x [305-380]
Approx. weight (kg): 10
Consumables: NA
Price range (USD): 200-26,000 (1,000-3,000
typical); price covers all types and variations
Typical product life time: 10 years
Shelf life (consumables): NA
Types and variations
Operating steps
• Place specimen slide on to stage.
• Adjust diopter wheel and interpupillary wheel to adjust for
operator’s eyesight and distance between the operator’s eyes.
• If applicable, select contrast method depending on specimen
• Select appropriate eyepiece and objective lenses to
adequately view specimen details.
Reported problems
Special care must be taken in fluorescence microscopy. A field
radiated in ultraviolet light should never be observed without
the barrier filter in place; permanent eye damage may result. The
repeated use of microscopes that are improperly designed may
increase the potential for cumulative trauma disorders. Injury can
occur if the user is forced to lean over the eyepieces or bend the
wrists at an unnatural angle. Viewing sharp, crisp images helps
reduce eyestrain and fatigue.
Use and maintenance
• Various illumination methods (Koehler most
• Monocular, binocular, trinocular eyepiece
configuration (binocular most common)
• Abbe, achromatic, aplanatic substage
condensers (Abbe condenser most
• Achromatic, fluorite (semiapochromatic),
apochromatic objective types (Achromatic
most common)
• Brightfield, darkfield, fluorescence,
interference, phase contrast, polarized
contrast methods (Brightfield most
• Stereo microscopes for 3-D viewing
• Inverted stage microscopes for largespecimen viewing
• Optional camera equipment
© Copyright ECRI Institute 2012 (not including GMDN codes and device names).
UMDNS codes and devices names: © Copyright ECRI Institute 2012.
Reproduced with Permission from ECRI Institute’s Healthcare Product Comparison System.
GMDN Codes and Term Names: © Copyright and database rights: GMDN Agency Ltd 2005-2012. All rights reserved.
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