Interprofessional Team Training for Surgeons and Anesthesiologists Using Virtual Reality

International Journal of Computer Assisted Radiology and Surgery (10/20) Chheang, Vuthea; Fischer, Virve; Buggenhagen, Holger; et al.

Researchers evaluated a prototype multi-user virtual reality (VR) tool to improve intraoperative communication between anesthesiologists and surgeons during laparoscopic procedures. The prototype enables users to connect and perform training in the immersive environment. Two medical education scenarios were developed to encourage the trainees to communicate during potential surgical complications. The two scenarios were based on surgical complications — undetected bleeding and insufficient muscle relaxant medication — designed to enhance communication between the anesthesiologist and surgeons. Expert evaluation confirmed the scenarios would encourage such communication, and the expert anesthesiologist and surgeons involved said they appreciated the wide range of functionalities in the VR tool. Although the study involved a small number of subjects, the researchers concluded the multi-user VR tool enables interprofessional training, with benefits including real-time collaboration and communication. "The proposed system opens new directions for medical training and provides a basis for future extensive clinical evaluation," the authors write.

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