February 13, 2013By Lance Baily

Video Game Simulations Decrease Surgeon Mistakes

Verena Dobnik of the Associated Press reminds us that a video game a day keeps the errors away!

surgery simulation

Posted on NBCNews, Verena’s article “Surgeons may err less by playing video games” reports that “researchers found that doctors who spent at least three hours a week playing video games made about 37 percent fewer mistakes in laparoscopic surgery and performed the task 27 percent faster than their counterparts who did not play video games.” Beth Israel and the National Institute on Media and the Family at Iowa State University completed the research.

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Personally I can attest that playing video games has helped me to be a better driver. Each completed game throughout my childhood and adult life provided unique opportunities to engage in hand-eye coordination exercises, from catching footballs to driving race cars.  While learning to drive a Fire Engine was certainly different from learning to ride a motorcycle, the ability to make quick visual judgements of distance, speed and angle that instantly translated into almost unconscious maneuvers to avoid collisions is a skill gained before I could even apply for a drivers license.

To learn more about where video games will take medical simulation in the years to come, check out the Clinical Playground.

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