The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Trice Medical's mi-eye 2, a disposable needle with an integrated camera that lets physicians use advanced diagnostic imaging to visualise joint injuries in their clinic.

The needle has been designed to be used in diagnostic and operative arthoscopic and endoscopic procedures to provide light and visualisation of interior cavity of the body through a natural or surgical opening.

It offers a direct visualisation to physicians and lets them inject or aspirate.

This is the second product from Trice Medical to have received the clearance from FDA. The company claims that the mi-eye 2 has been equipped with patented technology with significant improvements enhancing the camera’s resolution, field of view, depth of field and overall visualisation.

Trice Medical says that at present, there are about 28,000 orthopaedic surgeons with about 20 million visits annually with knee-related problems and 12 million shoulder pain. MRI scans may not always be reliable and might give out false readings.

With mi-eye 2, time can be saved by eliminating multiple visits associated with MRI scans. Instead, it offers a direct visualisation with the ease of a needle.

Trice Medical senior president and CEO Jeffrey O'Donnell said: "Based on feedback we received from our surgeon advisory board, we promptly implemented and pursued FDA clearance for the next-generation mi-eye 2.

"Our team made dramatic enhancements to the technology of the mi-eye, which reflects our continued commitment to patients by introducing our technology into a medical practice, and working to ensure that the mi-eye technology becomes the standard of care for providing an immediate real-time diagnosis.

“Our long-term goal is to eliminate the need for MRI exams and enable a quicker road to recovery."