How AR and VR Are Creating Ripples in the Healthcare Industry?

Augmented Reality (AR) & Virtual Reality (VR) once a dream have now become a reality and are adding value to the healthcare industry as well.

The healthcare industry is one where millions of lives are at a stake every minute. The industry is responsible for building a healthy nation by offering high-quality comprehensive healthcare services. But have you ever thought about the pressure this industry faces?

The demand in the healthcare industry is increasing exponentially with the passing years. As a result, over 20% of a country’s GDP will be spent on healthcare by the countries. The two obvious reasons for the same include an increased prevalence of chronic diseases and a suboptimal usage of healthcare resources.

The quality of healthcare services depends much on the ability of surgeons and doctors involved in the process. Instead of beating the bush around the industry challenges this blog focuses on the solution of AR & VR technologies in the healthcare industry.

AR and VR – the drugless solutions in healthcare

“AR and VR are giving a simulation quality that was possible only with a $ Billion system 20 years ago”

These technologies fit perfectly in the highly complex healthcare industry. These technologies are the computer-generated simulations that either integrate the real world (AR) or are self-contained (VR).

Finding it complex?  Understand this in simple words. AR applications are the ones that allow a user to move around in the real world. VR applications, on the other hand, do not allow the users to see their surroundings.

Still not clear? The AR&VR examples given below will help you.

Remember when people went crazy about catching these animated characters in parks, streets and even in public spaces.  This was the Pokemon Go Fever or the magic of AR. VR can be understood best with the VR games such as Asgard’sWarth where a user walks through the milky and starry sky. 

Now when you have a clear idea of these technologies we will discuss how AR and VR Are creating ripples in the Healthcare Industry.

AR & VR for Medical Education

Do you remember the Complex human anatomy and dissections that you studied in your school days? You might have completely forgotten that. A medical student, however, cannot afford to do so. Human anatomy and dissections are the foundation of medical studies.

The Medical Colleges and institutes are utilizing these technologies for giving the best form of education to students.  The education gained using AR & VR will help students in understanding the medical concepts most effectively and interestingly.

Cleveland Clinic is one of the many healthcare institutes that is allowing to visualize the concepts that students study in their books!  Some of the examples of AR and VR simulators used in Medical education are as follows:

Training field VR and AR Simulator
Laparoscopic surgery LaparoscopyVR, LapSim
Robotic surgery SEP, Robot, DV-Trainer
Orthopedics ImmersiveTouch, Phantom haptics interface 
Neurosurgery NeuroVR, ImmersiveTouch®, RoboSim,

AR and VR for Training of Surgeons

Ever thought about the woes of surgeons who have to use complex technologies and devices on the patients every day…?  They were not born with a skill of performing the surgeries but they learned it. The traditional form of training methods began to show cracks when it was found that around 30% of the general surgery residents were inefficient in performing surgery independently. 

Hence, the situation was alarming! As even a minute mistake in surgery may put a patient’s life on risk.

VR has taken over the game now!  As a result, it is helping surgeons to get a clear glimpse of the surgery process without any struggles. VR training allows surgeons to perform virtual surgery in a simulated environment.

Researchers have conducted studies and found that VR training improves surgical performance by up to 230% in comparison to traditional training methods.

AR and VR for Cancer treatment

Over 10 million Americans are fighting against a battle called ‘cancer’. These people are also living with a hope that there is a possibility of a life beyond cancer. Chemotherapy, surgery, radiation therapy, etc. are however some of the cancer treatments that do help in saving the lives of cancer patients. Unfortunately…not everyone is saved as millions of patients have already lost their lives because of this deadly disease.

“The human spirit is stronger than anything happens to it”                           

You will be surprised to know that Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) also extend to cancer treatment!  Yes… you heard it right AR & VR help the cancer patients who are undergoing the care.

 Below are some essentials that will let you understand how these miraculous technologies are helping cancer patients:

AR& VR is helping the patients to escape to a world that is free from the pain, anxiety, and discomfort of cancer… AR & VR help in improving the functionality, restoring the vision and pain management among the patients. Thus, these technologies form a medium of supportive care for cancer patients.

These technologies offer a calming and pleasant experience to patients during the cancer treatment process… a little sigh of relief for millions of cancer treatment. AR & VR help in shifting the perspective of cancer patients from negative to positive.

HoloLens AR in healthcare

Hololense… not heard about this before? Nothing complex… but an AR set that creates digital content holograms in a real-world environment.  Using holo lense a wearer can experience and manipulate an object as if it is present actually!

Medical students using Hololensecan see the realistic images of body organs and can examine it more deeply. Surgeons on the same hand can use this technology for preparing for a complex surgical procedure.

Alder Hay, one of the leading children hospitals of the UK has already realized the potential of Hololense. The hospital is using HoloLense for viewing the notes and medical information while they are performing the operations without even using their hands!

 Great …so 3d inside and outside images of body organs will now help surgeons!

AR for medical diagnosis

The healthcare industry is among the ones that have already geared up and stated utilizing AR and VR in various facets of healthcare.  The giants like Google and Apple are working on the devices and products that will help in improving the diagnosis process. For example an AR driven blood glucose monitors and the smart glasses.

The AR devices will improve both the effectiveness and efficiency of the diagnosis process that forms a foundation for a complete treatment process. The immersive VR experience is also being used in restoring memories and stimulating interactions and emotions of Dementia patients. AR & VR innovations are hence letting the medical professionals visualize the things that they cannot see easily.

AR & VR in healthcare
Credits: The Medical Futurist

So, now you know, how AR&VR technologies are creating ripples in the healthcare industry. It’s high time.

Healthcare industry players… fasten your seat belts!

The pressures and challenges of the healthcare industry will continue to increase. Hence, an immediate an action is needed. There is no magic wand but the implementation of revolutionary AR &VR technologies will help the industry players in improving their performance.

AR & VR are as deep as an ocean, will continue to give more when explored deeply.

Want to give a life to your healthcare projects using AR / VR

If you’d like to discuss how we can bring your Virtual Reality Healthcare project to life then please get in touch.

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