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2019/09/23 17:05:01

Virtual reality in medicine



Main article: Virtual reality (VR, Virtual Reality)

Methods of use of VR in medicine

  • Pain relief in children's hospital in Auckland by means of virtual technology.
  • Rehabilitation after strokes and heart attacks
  • A detailed research of a human body in one of the universities of California.
  • Simulation of surgical intervention at oncological diseases.
  • Control and pain relief at oncological diseases at adults, and also children.
  • VR helps patients to recover muscular activity with paralysis.
  • Detailed analysis and research of structures of a human body and also and their bodies


The first-ever low-invasive backbone operation in augmented reality is performed

In the middle of June, 2020 successfully there took place the first-ever miniinvasive backbone operation using technologies of augmented reality (AR). Read more here.

Students were allowed before surgeries in virtual reality

At the beginning of June, 2020 the university of Japan began to use virtual reality (VR) for training of students in the conditions of a coronavirus pandemic. Read more here.

A helmet for surgeries in augmented reality with the 4K-permission is released

In the middle of May, 2020 the American company Ocutrx Vision Technologies announced an output to the market of a surgical system of augmented reality with support of an output of the 4K-image. Read more here.


As virtual reality helps people with dementia with the British nursing homes

In the middle of September, 2019 within the research in one of the Oxford nursing homes began to implement technologies of virtual reality for the help to the patients having dementia. At the same time pictures of virtual reality are created individually for each patient.

The command of a pilot project agreed with employees of nursing home and created for patients with dementia a panorama of pictures from the past. Several patients were sent to memoirs of youth: to dance halls with a rock'n'roll from the 1950th years, in church where they got married, in trips abroad. Patients characterized the felt feelings as "amazing" and added that they after such shake-up feel much more vigorously. Scientists report that use of VR technologies improved communication and cognitive capabilities at more than half of patients with dementia who participated in a research.

Within the research in one of the Oxford nursing homes began to implement technologies of virtual reality for the help to the patients having dementia

The pilot project was started in nursing home at the Marstonsky court managed by charitable awards of St fund. John Care Trust. While it is not clear how many the research how many patients will be involved in it still will last and when final outputs are published. Meanwhile results cannot but please: so, one of patients with dementia, having visited the virtual apartment where the core after a marriage, managed to remember its address and a route to the bus stop.

However, sometimes researchers are limited by fear to cause unpleasant or distressing memoirs is long ago the known problem when it comes about tests of VR among patients with dementia. It is reported that nursing homes already refused services of the companies which suggested to show to patients the personnel of times of World War II. Doctors were afraid that it can be too injuring experience for patients.[1]

As virtual reality reduces severe pain

At the end of August, 2019 researchers from California showed how technologies of virtual reality can provide a contactless method of pain relief at stationary and ambulatory patients with a chronic pain syndrome.

Virtual reality is already used in medical institutions: it is applied to remove concern, to distract patients during surgical processing of wounds and to reduce pain during physical therapy at burn patients. Studying soothing effect of virtual reality, scientists from the Medical center Cedars-Sinai in Los Angeles conducted randomized study in which 120 patients with the moderated or expressed pain syndrome were distributed on two groups. One of them received library of virtual reality on the Samsung Gear VR headset, and other group configured TVs on the improving channel which included the weakening programs with excursions and recitation.

Virtual reality helps to struggle with pain, scientists from the Medical center Cedars-Sinai proved

It was offered to participants to use the equipment of VR or to watch TV during three ten-minute sessions a day two days running. Patients estimated expressiveness of a pain syndrome on a scale from 1 to 10 before and after sessions. The research showed that VR reduced pain much better, than the TV. The greatest advantage of treatment was received by patients with the most expressed pain that will potentially allow to use virtual reality for decrease in doses of opioid medicines, researchers consider.

The mechanism of soothing effect of virtual reality is still not clear. The most popular modern explanation is the hypothesis that rich, fascinating experience of virtual reality suppresses perception by a brain of pain, limiting signal processing of pain from other parts of a body.[2]

Use for treatment of dementia

At the beginning of July, 2019 the British-Gambian startup of VR Revival offered the interactive and personalized platform of virtual reality which should help people with dementia. The long-term goal of the project – to improve quality of life both patients, and people who are looking after them and also to increase knowledge of the population of Africa of this status. Read more here.

Virtual reality began to be used instead of an anesthesia

At the beginning of June, 2019 at an annual meeting of the European society of anesthesiologists researchers provided results according to which the sessions of virtual reality held before a local regionarnoy anesthesia for orthopedic procedures and during it, significantly reduce pain and the need for an intravenous anesthesia.

Local introduction of anesthetic can be stressful and painful, and it is often combined with an intravenous sedation to help patients to relax. Nevertheless, its use does not do without ghost effects, such as headache, nausea and drowsiness. Randomized study showed that hypnosis under the influence of virtual reality could become a valuable alternative of intravenous anesthesia. Among advantages of a new method there is a lack of ghost effects and smaller recovery time.

Virtual reality reduces the need for anesthesia by 50%

60 adult patients who appointed orthopedic transaction with a local regionarnoy anesthesia participated in a research. In a check group carried out a standard intravenous sedation; in the second group VR hypnosis was used during a local regionarnoy of anesthesia; in the third group VR hypnosis was carried out before transaction and during it on an equal basis with a local regionarnoy anesthesia. The intravenous sedation in group of hypnosis was applied if the severity of pain, according to the patient, became more than 3 of 10 points.

VR hypnosis was provided with points of virtual reality and earphones – the patient watched the weakening video about swimming on the submarine and life in the sea, with the calming offscreen voice which slowed down a rhythm of breath of the patient. Analyses showed that only 25% of the patients receiving VR hypnosis during local anesthesia needed an intravenous sedation, and among the patients receiving hypnosis both before transaction and during it, the share of such people made only 10%.[3]


Virtual reality relieves pain

At the beginning of June, 2018 it became known that the staff of department of emergency aid of hospital Saint-Joseph (St. Joseph Hospital) in Paris began to use in therapeutic purposes 3D - points of virtual reality (VR). The VR device helps the patient to relax and easier to postpone unpleasant and painful procedures, eliminating need for medicinal anesthesia.

We suggest the patient to plunge into a meditative situation and to make an interactive trip during which the person can listen to music, be engaged in painting or solve a riddle — the cofounder and the CEO of the French startup of Healthy Mind who stands behind implementation of VR glasses in Parisian "ambulance" told in an interview to Reuters agency of Reda Khouadra.[4]

Staff of department of emergency aid of hospital in Paris began to use in therapeutic purposes 3D - points of virtual reality

Having put on the massive VR headset, the patient is had to the Japanese zen garden or it appears among snow-covered slopes. Being in the virtual world, people become more patient and quieter transfer the insignificant, but painful manipulations connected with suture, processing of burns, introduction of an urological catheter or reposition of dislocation.

This project with use of virtual reality allows us to offer patients technology which distracts their attention, stops pain and concern when rendering emergency aid — Olivier Ganansia, the chief of department of emergency aid of hospital Saint-Joseph in Paris said.[5]

In a conversation with journalists he assumed that in 10 years of technology of virtual reality will become usual and will be used in hospitals on a daily basis.

It should be added that development of Healthy Mind got an award of the Australian University of Adelaide in the amount of $20 thousand. Using these means three 24-year-old founders of a startup — Reda Huadra, Little Luvinya (Malo Louvigné) and Timothée Cabanne — went to Seattle to provide the child of Microsoft corporation.[6]

Microsoft provided a VR system for blind people

In February, 2018 the Microsoft company provided the system of virtual reality (VR) which will allow people to be guided with weak sight in space. The project received the name Canetroller. Read more here.


The market of technologies of virtual reality for health care was estimated at $770 million

By 2023 the volume of the world market of technologies added and virtual reality (Augmented and Virtual Reality, AR/VR) for health care will reach a point in $5 billion. Such forecast was made on November 30, 2017 by Research and Markets analytical company.

According to the experts, in 2017 AR-and VR technologies of medical appointment will provide revenue in the amount of $769.2 million. To the 2023rd market size in money will increase almost by 6.5 times and will reach $4.99 billion. Taking into account it it is expected that the annual average growth rate (CAGR) in the considered market during the specified seven-year period will be 36.6%.

The volume of the world market of AR-and VR technologies for health care will approach $5 billion in 2023

Among the main drivers which will provide positive dynamics analysts specify distribution in a health care system of attached devices, increase in investments into technologies of augmented and virtual reality and the growing need of optimization of medical expenses. The lack of knowledge necessary for implementation of AR-and VR solutions and also insufficient qualification of doctors in the field of these technologies can become the limiting factors.

Believe in Research and Markets that AR-and VR solutions can be useful to the organization of remote consultations of patients with doctors. Also technologies of augmented and virtual reality will be used more widely in the medical and rehabilitation purposes.

Besides, application of AR-and VR systems will allow to increase efficiency of diagnostic laboratories. In particular, with their help laboratories will be able to conduct remotely collecting of samples and operational data in remote regions, and to small and average laboratories services based on technologies of augmented and virtual reality will allow to automate carrying out researches and to organize remote monitoring of the equipment.[7]

In Great Britain performed an open brain operation and removed it in virtual reality

The team of neurosurgeons from London performed operation on an open brain of the patient, having written all process on the camera with effect of immersion in virtual reality.[8][9] reports about it[10].

As notes the edition, in the operating room two cameras were mounted: one was placed on an office wall, it worked in the mode of panoramic shooting by 360 degrees, and another was fixed on a forehead of the doctor that process registered from the first person. Then the video was mounted and cut off, having left only the main stages of operational process in a final five-minute roller.

Video begins with the description of the forthcoming transaction and the short story about the patient and his disease. In one of vessels of a brain of the man aneurysm which could lead to fatal hemorrhage at any time was detected. To impose a clip which localizes on a vessel and "will bring" dangerous education out of the blood circulatory system, physicians were forced to perform an open brain operation.

"Signing up of the complete procedure in VR allows us to begin process of reconstruction of transaction in simulation of VR in which surgeons will be able to practice key stages of the procedure in the safe virtual operational room and actually to feel hands of texture of different types of fabrics using our solution FeelReal VR" — the founder of Fundamental VR Chris Skettergud told.

Each stage of transaction and action of surgeons on a video is commented by the offscreen consultant. As the producer of a roller noted, similar videos can help future doctors and students when they begin to perform training operations in virtual reality.

Video is a part of the educational Brainbook platform which through social media helps specialists to obtain from around the world up-to-date information in the field of neurosurgery and treatment of diseases of a brain.

Phantom pains will be cured by virtual reality

The Phantom MD application will help the people suffering from a pathological pain syndrome. After amputation the feeling of pain in a remote part of a body arises at 72% of patients, and at 60% remains for several years.

Using Phantom MD and also points of virtual reality, a missing part of a body can be simulated and then and "to see". As a result, developers assure, the human brain will obtain the necessary visual information, and pain decreases. During tests 3 sessions for 2 hours as a result of which the patient noted reduction of pain were held.

The Yaroslavl students Magomed-Amin Idilov and Daniil Fedulov acted as developers of the application, the invention already brought them the first place at the All-Russian youth innovation forum "MIF-2017".

The project, most likely, will be very demanded as now phantom pains dull by means of medicines that is not really effective. Supports a startup regional Corporation of development of a small and medium entrepreneurship[11].

Use for video broadcasts of transactions in neurosurgery

On June 7, 2017 Nokia announced carrying out the first-ever forward video broadcast of neurosurgical transaction in a format of augmented reality. The Helsinki university central hospital (Helsinki University Hospital, HUH) became the partner of the Finnish company in this project.

Transaction was filmed with the panoramic cameras OZO Nokia and broadcast through OZO Live Nokia Internet service. The interactive microscope and other informative graphics were in addition displayed.

Nokia carried out the first-ever broadcast of neurosurgical transaction in augmented reality

Usually in operating rooms about 10-15 observers, in addition to the doctors and nurses participating in transaction find room. Video broadcasting by means of OZO Live Nokia provides virtual presence as is wished of people in the operating room where they would not be, professor Mika Niemela heading office of neurosurgery in the Helsinki university central hospital notes. During the first use of this technology about 100 neurosurgeons were connected to transaction.

HUH wants to be the pioneer in studying, use and demonstration of new opportunities in the field of the virtual, added and mixed realities and also in promotion of the concept of use of these technologies in the medical purposes — Miikka Korja, the neurosurgeon and the chief specialist on innovations in the Helsinki university hospital said.

According to Kitty Mueller (Kiti Müller), the neurologist and the senior research associate of division of Digital Health Lab Nokia, cooperation of the company with HUH will allow doctors of different specializations to get acquainted with the latest technologies, including with absolutely new experience of transfer of medical information.

It is an excellent example of use of the solutions OZO Nokia for creation and exchange of impressive experience in the educational purposes — the vice president of division of Digital Media Nokia Paul Melin added.[12]


Use for 3D - visualization of a fruit in mother's womb

In November, 2016 the Brazilian scientists showed 3D technology - visualization of the child in mother's womb. The new development constructed on virtual reality (VR) allows to see a fruit with a high accuracy.

Inventors connected an ultrasonography method to magnetic resonance imaging, carrying out scanning of specific sites of an internal surface of a uterus and body of a fruit. As a result the three-dimensional image which can be recovered is under construction, having put on a helmet of virtual reality. For gain of effect of presence  added the sounds of heartbeat of a fruit received at ultrasonography to models.

Fruit 3D model on the 12th week of development

According to scientists, the received volume models allow to foretell how the kid after the birth will look.

Three-dimensional models of germs and  technology of virtual reality can help us to improve our ideas of  how  the anatomy of germs is arranged, and  will allow us to use such pictures when  training students and  to show them to future parents. They can be brought through  Occulus Rift and  other helmets of virtual reality — one of authors of research Heron Werner reported.

Fruit 3D model on the 26th week of development

The method detailed 3D - visualization of a fruit also allows to inspect with a high accuracy bodies of women and a fruit in real time. So, using VR glasses scientists could consider in details a status of airways of a fruit, estimate their passability and length. In case of pathology it would help to make the decision on need of postnatal surgical intervention.

Fruit 3D model on the 26th week of development

Results of development of the project of creation of three-dimensional models of children in a womb of mother will be provided within the annual conference of Radiological community of North America to RSNA 2016 (Chicago; On November 27 — on December 1).[13]

Phobias will treat virtual reality

From July 7 to July 8 the companies Polymedia also Visiology held the corporate hackathon dated for the 18 anniversary of the leading Russian AV integrator Polymedia. It was offered to the participants who broke into 5 commands to think up and develop in 36 hours software for the analysis and data visualization in the medical industry.

In two days of continuous work of a command provided five working prototypes of the information systems allowing a message the analysis and forecasting of development of epidemics and calculation of needs for drugs to treat phobias using virtual reality, to help speech development of children of preschool age, to predict myocardial infarction probability, to collect and structure analysis results.

Staff of Polymedia system integrator, Visiology BI developer, and the students of a magistracy of the university Innopolis going a work practice to Visiology participated in a hackathon.

Refereeing was based five main criteria: quality of technical implementation (architectural concepts, the code, the used technologies), design and user experience, business potential of a product, quality of project management and quality of the presentation. The highest estimates on all this parameter were received by the Voskhod command which was engaged in development of the system of fight against phobias on the basis of technologies of virtual reality. The command showed the project on the example of a system prototype for treatment of an aero phobia (fear of flights on aircraft) using the points of virtual reality imitating a flight situation and the pulsator which is reading out data on a physical status of the patient at the time of playing of this situation.

The best developers of technologies of virtual reality in medicine

In March, 2016 analysts of Technavio submitted the list of the companies which, according to them, it is better than others progressed in development of technologies of virtual reality for health care.

  • DeepStream. The company creates games which, according to developers, help patients to muffle pain and to improve the general health by immersion in virtual reality.

  • VirtaMed. The company offers the computer simulator by means of which the beginning surgeons can be trained in performing transactions and fulfill the skills.

Use of a helmet of virtual reality when carrying out surgery
  • EON Reality. This supplier interactive 3D - content is known in Russia. In 2014 Croc opened in our country the center of three-dimensional solutions based on EON Reality equipment. In this center it is possible to test modern audiovisual technologies: 3D - a projection to the screen, a holographic projection to glass, the room of virtual reality, the display with the three-dimensional image without use of special glasses, etc. Doctors worldwide already adopted developments of EON Reality.

  • Vuzix. The company specializes in development, production, sale and promotion of wearable electronics. In January, 2016 Intel invested about $25 million in Vuzix. "Smart" Vuzix glasses found application in different areas, including medicine.

  • Virtalis. Former "subsidiary" of Muse Technologies company is engaged in development of systems of modeling of the different equipment, including difficult medical.

  • WorldViz. One more company to which Intel gave a financial support. WorldViz creates 3D-interactive and immersive solutions for visualization and modeling. Technologies of this startup are used in an intraoperative ultrasonic computer tomography for carrying out researches in the field of neurology and psychology.[14]

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