By : Rebecca Harper
We’ve all become accustomed to the idea of virtual reality in films and gaming, but it isn’t all that easily associated with the medical profession. However, virtual reality has been used to make surgery safer for years. From helping to train specialist surgeons to helping cosmetic surgery patients make a considered decision, virtual reality is changing the surgical landscape for the better.
One of the biggest challenges cosmetic surgeons face is managing the expectations of their patients. Many will arrive in the surgeon’s office for their first consult with a very warped view in their mind of the potential outcome of their surgery. With virtual reality, the patient can actually step into a room of mirrors and see the potential outcome of their surgery. One surgeon who is a proponent of virtual reality in consultations is Gary Ross, a plastic surgeon based in Manchester. He specialises in all types of cosmetic surgery, but many people rely on him for breast augmentation and breast reduction. He cites virtual reality as being the reason that his patients are able to make considered decisions and also allows them to open to up their surgeon.
Training the next generation
Cosmetic surgery is a highly skilled section of medicine, and it can be difficult to give surgeons the time they need to perfect their procedures. Virtual reality is helping to train the next generation of cosmetic surgeons to excel. As there has been so much attention placed on the importance of cosmetic surgery being treated as a specialist branch of medicine, there naturally needs to be a path for these surgeons to follow that will allow them to get the training they need. Using virtual reality, surgeons can clock far more hours than they would previously manage.
Further Health Tech Advancements
Virtual reality isn’t the only form of health technology that is shaping the surgical field. Surgeons are in the process of trialling LED light therapy as a way to speed up the healing process and reduce the appearance of surgical scars. Using wearable LED light technology, patients can experience much faster recovery times with a reduction in visible scarring.
All of these advances are working in tandem to make the cosmetic surgery industry safer and more accessible. While it may have once been a taboo subject that many people would avoid discussing, pushing it into the limelight with new health technology is surely to have a positive impact on the industry as a whole.