Augmented reality and virtual reality are remarkably changing entire industries and opening up new opportunities in every possible direction. Researchers and companies in the healthcare industry are constantly looking for new ways to make the best use of emerging technologies. Using VR and AR contributes to improving experiences and resolving problems, varying from patient care to maintenance of equipment.
According to researchers from Goldman Sachs, it is predicted that VR and AR will be used everywhere over the coming years and by the year 2025 the size of VR/AR healthcare market will exceed 4 billion pounds. Here are a few examples of how these two technologies are transforming the healthcare industry.
Surgery and operating rooms
Surgeons have already started testing and using virtual reality in operating rooms, which allows them to perform operations in real time with virtual reality cameras, this also gives them the chance to perform surgeries in an interactive way. Doctors and medical students are given the chance to participate in operations through an app or website. Using AR can further be used in medical operations that are computer assisted with what is called Augmented reality assisted surgery.
One very important aspect in the healthcare industry that is evolving is medical training for doctors and nurses. VR allows for real-time streaming of surgical operations whilst AR is used to train nurses how to find veins for instance. VR gives trainees an insight and chance to be put in a real-life scenario, but without the patient’s hanging in the balance, ultimately better preparing young doctors and nurses both mentally and physically by immersing them in a particular case scenario.
Maintenance of lab machines
Medical equipment is highly complex due to the fact that they contain advanced software. This makes it difficult to detect and repair. However, AR is one of the highly developed technologies that can accurately and easily detect failures in medical equipment and allow for quick repair, enabling hospitals to avoid financial losses and increase efficiency.
Medical augmented reality apps are not only used by doctors but can also be used by patients to give them an insight on their statistics and symptoms. Through these apps, doctors are able to inform and educate patients about certain types of diseases they may be facing.