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Table 1 Comparison of colour measurement devices in terms of parameter measured, reliability, correlation with clinical score and cost

From: A systematic review of objective burn scar measurements

Device Company Parameter Intra-rater Reliability Inter-rater reliability Correlation with clinical score Cost Portability References
Computerised colour analysis Sony Hi-8 Handycam CCD-TR 705E video camera recorder and Adobe Photoshop Hue, saturation, value No data No data VSS Vascularity score significantly correlated with hue (r = 0.311) and saturation (r = 0.35) (p < 0.051), index with hue and saturation combined correlated even better (r = 0.42). £5000–10,000 Yes Davey et al. 1999 [16].
Computerised colour analysis Nikon D70 camera and Adobe photoshop Tristimulus colorimetry (L*a*b*) 0.95–0.99 0.94–0.95 L* and a* values are more important than b* values in distinguishing colour features between normal skin and scars. No data Yes Cheon et al. 2010 [32]
Labscan XE (non-portable version) Hunterlab Tristimulus colorimetry (L*a*b*), chroma and hue. Good (0.95–0.99) Acceptable to good (0.50–0.99, outlier low value of 0.50 for a* [ranged from 0.01 to 0.77]) L*, a*, b* and hue had moderate to strong correlation with VSS pigmentation and vascularity scores. Chroma had low correlation with pigmentation and vascularity (r = −0.40 and −0.17) >£10,000 Poor Li-Tsang et al. 2003 [17]
Labscan XE (portable version) Hunterlab Tristimulus colorimetry (L*a*b*) No data No data No data £5000–10,000 Yes Li-Tsang et al. 2005 [102]
Chromameter Konica-Minolta Tristimulus colorimetry (L*a*b*) Acceptable (0.73–0.89) Good (0.91–0.97) Unable to differentiate between hypo- and hyperpigmented scars and normal and 'red' skin (On Seattle, Hamilton and Vancouver scar scales) £5000–10,000 Yes Draaijers et al. 2004 [15], Oliveira et al. 2005 [29],
Eykona 3D camera Fuel 3D Tristimulus colorimetry (L*a*b*) No data No data Good correlation (Manchester scar scale) <£5000 (not including targets) Yes Hallam et al 2013 [25]
Colorimeter Courage + Khazaka Tristimulus colorimetry (L*a*b*) and ITA (Individual Typology Angle) No data Good (0.91–98) No data £5000–10,000 (including cost of hub) Yes van der Wal et al. 2013 [20].
Mexameter Courage + Khazaka Narrow-band spectrophotometry (melanin and erythema) Good for melanin (0.89–0.97) and acceptable for erythema (0.74–0.90) Good for melanin (0.95) and erythema (0.82–0.85) No data <£5000 Yes Nedelec et al. 2008 (I) [30], Nedelec et al. 2008 (II) [106], van der Wal et al. 2013 [20].
Dermaspectrometer/DSM II Colorimeter Cortex Both tristimulus colorimetry and narrow-band spectrophotometry Erythema: 0.29–0.94 Melanin: 0.72–0.87 L*a*b*: no data. Erythema: 0.68–0.91
Melanin: 0.91–0.94
L*a*b*: no data.
Erythema: Moderate but significant r = 0.50 (<0.001)
Melanin: weak but significant r = 0.32 (0.02)–0.63 (<0.001)
<£5000 Yes Gankande et al. 2014 [6], Gankande et al. 2015 [248], van der Wal et al. 2013 [20], Oliveira et al. 2005 [29].
Standardised digital imaging (SDI) + Spectral modelling (SpM) Custom made Estimated concentration change of haemoglobin and melanin Good for haemoglobin (0.875) and melanin (0.886) Good for haemoglobin (0.955) and melanin (0.959) Acceptable correlation with POSAS (0.63 for haemoglobin, 0.60 for melanin) and VSS (0.74 for haemoglobin, 0.53 for melanin) <£5000 (but not commercially available) Yes Kaartinen et al. 2011 [7, 8].
Dermoscopy Hong Kong Productivity Council RGB values: lightness and redness Redness: 0.980 Redness: 0.93 Strong correlation between the VSS scores of vascularity and the RGB values of redness obtained from the dermoscope (r = 0.625, p < 0.01).
Strong correlation also found between transformed VSS scores of pigmentation and the lightness of the dermoscope pictures when vascularity was blanched out (i.e. when measuring pure pigmentation) (r = 0.783, p < 0.01).
No data Yes Wei et al. 2015 [238].
Lightness: 0.965 Lightness: 0.871
  1. RGB = red, green and blue