Playing Nintendo Wii Makes You A Better Surgeon
Playing Nintendo Wii could make you a better surgeon, a recent study suggests.
Research for the study was conducted at the Sapienza University of Rome in Italy. In coming to their results, the researchers had 21 surgical residents play the video game system for one hour per day, five days a week, for four weeks. Afterward, residents were asked to perform a simulated keyhole surgery. The results indicated that those who played the games performed considerably better than residents who did not play the video games.
"We had a lot of fun," says University of Rome Medical School professor Dr. Gregorio Patrizi, "Research doesn't need to be boring."
Laparoscopic surgery is a minimally invasive procedure in which tiny cameras and surgical instruments are inserted into the body, negating the need for a large incision. The camera's image is projected on a screen while the surgeon controls the instruments using an outside handle.
But performing surgery in this way can be difficult for those not accustomed to it, and the researchers had a hunch that something might make the task easier.
"The study arose from an intuition:" Patrizi says, "We noticed that some people were more adaptable at their first attempt on the (laparoscopic) simulator. We investigated, almost kidding, to see if they were 'nerds' used to playing video games, and it turned out that there was a strange coincidence."
So the researchers decided to do a study of their own, and the results were astonishing.
"The differences in outcomes between the two groups were far beyond our expectations," Patrizi says. "What surprised us the most was that almost all the results were clearly statistically significant, even in complex procedures like virtual cholecystectomy."
Prior studies have shown that video gaming could improve spatial attention and eye-hand coordination in laparoscopic procedures and Patrizi's is one of the first structured trials to actually put this to the test. That said, the benefits of playing the Wii might be limited to beginning surgeons.
"I'm skeptical that at an advanced level that would help the surgeon become better," Dr Brant Oelschlager, chief of the University of Washington's Center for Videoendoscopic Surgery, said. "At some point, it starts to have diminishing returns and you have to gain the rest of your skills in a real patient."
Regardless, Patrizi and his team feel that the Wii could be a useful, inexpensive and fun tool for surgical training.
'Rayman Legends' Developer 'Pissed' About Wii U Delay
Nintendo and Wii U owners aren't the only ones upset about the recent setback.
Wii U Death Watch: Only 5 Percent Of Developers Making Games For Nintendo
Most developer interest still directed at Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.
Is Wii U Out For The Count Already? Don't Dismiss Nintendo Just Yet
The Wii U might be struggling at the moment, but Nintendo has the ability to rebound in a big way.
Nintendo's Wii Mini Announced For UK: Don't Buy It
Nintendo's redesigned Wii Mini will launch in the UK in March. Don't buy it.
MORE IN ITECHPOST
How To Build A Gaming PC For $450 In July 2020
What do you get when you combine a used pre-built PC and a graphics card? A great gaming PC for the price.
[Watch] NASA Announces Week Update: What Happened to the Artemis Program?
Could we be closer to getting to the moon? NASA provides updates on the progress.
[Guide, Tips] How to Play Marvel's Iron Man VR And Get All The Trophies
With the release of the Marvel's Iron Man VR, now even you can take to the skies and fly through canyons as you save civilians and blast bad guys along the way.
But playing the game is even trickier than it sounds.