Truth in True Color LED Light Safety: Orascoptic’s TruColor™ vs. SurgiTel’s True Color Neutral

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ErgoPractice News – March 2020

SurgiTel Answers Clinicians’ Questions

“Since Orascoptic’s beam-forming optics do not use True Color Optical Technology, TruColor is not True Color.”

After one of my recent seminars about safety issues related to loupes and LED headlights, one of the seminar attendees brought her Orascoptic loupes and TruColor LED headlight to me and asked me to evaluate her light. Orascoptic told her that this TruColor LED light offers a very high color rendering index (CRI) of higher than 90 and meets blue light safety requirements.

My quick evaluation showed that her head tilt angle with her loupes is beyond the safe head tilt range, and her LED light has a very strong blue component which becomes obvious when compared against SurgiTel’s True Color Neutral LED headlight. This March 2020 ErgoPractice eNews issue will explain what SurgiTel’s patented True Color Optical Technology is and review differences between SurgiTel’s True Color LED Headlights and Orascoptic’s TruColor™ LED Lights.

What is Orascoptic’s TruColor Technology?

The main difference between Orascoptic’s TruColor LED Lights (5,700K LED chips) and Standard LED lights (6,500K LED chips) is the color temperature of LED chips used. CR Foundation’s measurements indicate that the color temperature of beams of Orascoptic’s standard LED lights (6,500K LED chips) is over 9,000K which can create at least 150% more blue light hazard than SurgiTel True Color Neutral LED lights (4,000K LED chips) (see our November 2019 ErgoReference). It is noted that the color temperature of the beam of SurgiTel’s True Color LED lights is the same as the color temperature of LED chips used, but the color temperature of beams of Orascoptic’s LED lights is not the same as the color temperature of LED chips used.

Since Orascoptic’s TruColor LED lights (5,700K LED chips) use the same beam-forming optics as used with their standard LED lights (6,500K LED chips), we can estimate that the color temperature of beams of TruColor LED lights may be over 8,000K which can create at least 125% more blue light hazard than SurgiTel True Color Neutral LED lights. It is noted that as the color temperature increases, the risk of blue light hazard linearly increases. The technical data published by the Department of Energy shows that the blue light hazard at 10,000K is 3 times the risk as 4,000K.

Please see our November 2019 ErgoReference for more information.

What is SurgiTel’s True Color Optical Technology?

The basic requirement of SurgiTel’s beam-forming optics for LED headlights is to maintain the color temperature of the LED chips used for LED lights throughout the entire working distance range of the light. SurgiTel’s True Color Optical Technology obtained several patents in order to meet this requirement successfully. If beam-forming optics use True Color Optical Technology, the color temperature of the beam does not change as the working distance changes. The color temperature of the beam is the same over the entire beam area.

Orascoptic’s TruColor LED Headlight vs. SurgiTel’s True Color Neutral LED Headlight

CR Foundation evaluated many LED headlights and found that SurgiTel’s True Color Neutral LED headlights offer the best color accuracy and eye safety (Reference Check: Clinicians’ Report). This investigation is the only one that used objective scientific approaches. With this knowledge, we will compare Orascoptic’s TruColor LED light with SurgiTel’s True Color Neutral LED lights.

Figure 1 shows beam patterns at various working distances: (a) SurgiTel’s True Color Neutral LED light and (b) Orascoptic’s TruColor LED headlight. As shown in Figure 1, the color/pattern of Orascoptic’s TruColor LED lights changes as the working distance changes. It is noted that the brightness of images became dimmer as the working distance increases and that beam sizes were adjusted for easy comparisons. It is evident that Orascoptic’s TruColor LED headlights have strong blue tints. Figure 2 shows apples under the illumination of SurgiTel’s True Color Neutral LED headlights and Orascoptic’s TruColor LED headlights against the room light.

Since Orascoptic’s beam-forming optics do not use True Color Optical Technology, TruColor is not true color. TruColor may mean that the beam quality of Orascoptic’s TruColor LED lights has been improved over Orascoptic’s standard LED headlights, but that does not ensure that this update created a safe, color-accurate LED light.

Do you have a story about how SurgiTel has helped your safety, comfort, or effectiveness in your work? Please share it with me at jchang@surgitel.com.

Summary:
  • The beam of Orascoptic’s TruColor LED lights has a stronger blue spectral component than the beam of SurgiTel’s True Color neutral LED lights. Thus Orascoptic’s TruColor LED lights can create significantly more blue light hazard than SurgiTel’s True Color neutral LED lights
  • When compared with the typical room light, the color accuracy of Orascoptic TruColor LED lights is significantly less accurate than SurgiTel’s True Color Neutral LED lights.
  • It is noted that “TruColor” is a marketing term, not a scientific term. Although “TruColor” may imply “True Color,” the term “TruColor” is not “True Color.”