New technological advances could change the way we look at anesthesia and sedation
As the worlds of healthcare and technology continue to collide, medical professionals are always looking at different ways new technology can be applied in the operating room. Which has led to this: virtual reality anesthesia. Yes, doctors are now figuring out a way to use VR in place of anesthesia to calm the nerves felt by many going under the knife.
Digital simulations, including clouds rolling over the beach or fireworks exploding in the night sky, are mixed with the comforting sounds of Beethoven in order to soothe those pre-surgery jitters. As futuristic as it sounds, when combined with a simple local anesthetic, VR anesthesia has actually proven to be quite successful, so much so that a hospital in Spain performed a knee operation using VR anesthesia on a live patient. The results? The surgery went off without a hitch, and was even streamed in real-time using Google Glass.
Here are four reasons why VR anesthesia is turning heads in the medical field:
- VR simulations can lower heart rate and blood pressure.
- It eases anxiety, eliminating the need for a general anesthetic.
- Creates total immersion, blocking out all light and noise of a stressful OR.
- Has the potential to minimize pharmacological therapy, which reduces the risks associated with sedation.
To read more about virtual reality anesthesia, click here.
Be sure to check out actual footage of the digital simulations here.