The world’s smallest flexible microscope is being used at the University of Virginia Health System to diagnose diseases and to enable instantaneous treatment.

The probe-based confocal laser endomicroscopy (pCLE) allows physicians to see live tissue in real time at the cellular level and remove diseased tissue.

pCLE is used to accurately differentiate cancerous and pre-cancerous tissue during colonoscopies, upper endoscopies and during the standard pancreatic and bile duct cancer detection procedure.

University of Virginia Health System division of gastroenterology and hepatology’s associate professor and the only physician in Virginia to use pCLE Michel Kahaleh said the device gives the opportunity to immediately see changes in the cells.