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The Augmented Reality (RA) and Virtual Reality (VR) are proving that in the short term they will be an essential part of both patient therapy and medical training, and future doctors in universities. Studies conclude that VR plays and will play a fundamental role in the learning of operating room personnel and the treatment of specific conditions. Not forgetting, for example, its value as a tool in health for neurorehabilitation.
This technology is based on the premise that knowledge is retained much better when experienced directly than when simply seen or heard. It is an artificial scenario that the person perceives as real, through stimuli for sight, hearing and touch.
Users are trained under changing conditions, and can give immediate feedback. According to research by the Center for Scientific Research (CSIC), in a virtual reality environment, the brain responds in the same way as it would in the real world. In this sense, a surgical intervention or a specific phase of surgery can be simulated, as well as a treatment.
In addition, VR offers great possibilities for practicing clinical situations that require quick action by the practitioners. We speak in this case of saving lives, which contributes to sharpen the skills of the toilets.
Specialists who have already experienced this technology applied to the training of doctors have ensured its validity. McMahan, Lab director at University of Texas said “In the past, Virtual Reality applied to health care focused mainly on the exercise of small motor skills, such as laparoscopic surgery or endoscopy. However, the innovation in VR is now constant, and there are an increase of participants in this field that provide new hardware and software solutions.”
It benefits those people who have suffered trauma, stroke or brain injury such as stroke, since they can simulate aspects of daily life in which the patient should move, but in which reality could not do it accurately and without danger. Virtual Reality also contributes to improve the mobility of older people or patients with cerebral palsy, Parkinson’s, Multiple sclerosis and deficiency in cognitive abilities in general.
VR can also be combined with other emerging technologies to improve people’s health. An example of this is the combination of Virtual Reality with Biofeedback for the treatment of chronic headache.
Recently was started an application that, coupled with glasses of virtual reality, allowed health personnel to immerse themselves in realities close to Ebola, in addition to other types of diseases and crisis situations.
At the same time, the medical universities are also receiving a gradual acceptance of the VR technology, since in this way the students can complement their studies with practices in an interactive environment with high doses of realism.