U.K. group uses AR to simulate radiology procedures

2020 02 07 17 50 4721 Virtual Reality Doctors 400

Researchers from the U.K. have developed a medical simulation program that allows radiology trainees to practice image-guided interventional procedures using augmented reality (AR) technology.

The group, including Drs. Mohamad Hamady and Dimitri Amiras, radiologists from Imperial College London, offered their AR training program to junior radiologists from multiple medical institutions throughout London. The program gave trainees the opportunity to simulate image-guided needle biopsy using an AR headset (Microsoft, HoloLens 2) in a setting that was almost identical to what a radiologist would see when performing an actual CT-guided biopsy.

Traditionally, senior radiologists have taught trainees how to perform CT-guided interventions while doing so on real patients. But the growing number and complexity of procedures have motivated radiologists to explore new training approaches.

The new AR-based simulation method allows for accurate image guidance and tactile feedback at a fraction of the cost of traditional methods, the authors noted. Advanced technologies such as AR have the potential to redefine education and training for doctors in the future.

"As technology improves this will not only change the way we train but also the way in which we perform procedures," Amiras said in a university statement.

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