Genentech Clinical Trials Are Using Virtual Reality to Train Eye Surgeons

Discussion in 'HardForum Tech News' started by cageymaru, Feb 8, 2019.

  1. cageymaru

    cageymaru [H]ard as it Gets

    Apr 10, 2003
    Genentech has started a clinical trial for an eye implant, the size of a grain of rice, that will treat wet age-related macular degeneration by continuously releasing a drug to treat the disease. More than 1 million people over the age of 50 are affected by the disease. Genentech has invested well over $1 million in virtual reality (VR) equipment and the development of a surgical training program to use VR to train 150 eye surgeons to perform the surgery. If the FDA approves the eye implant in the upcoming years, the company expects to use VR to train an additional 2,200 retina specialists to master the procedure. The device will relieve the patients of having to visit the doctor monthly. The drug that Genentech received FDA approval for in 2006 has reduced the rate of blindness from the disease by 50%.

    "Historically, surgeons had to learn on patients. What we're trying to do here is see all the possible permutations that can occur, in virtual reality, so that when [the surgeons] are actually doing this on a patient, they're ready," said Anthony Adamis, senior vice president of development innovation for Genentech. The surgeons use a workstation that includes a virtual reality headset and a physical replica of the human eye and replicas of surgical tools. Surgeons are trained in virtual reality on how to implant the device that contains the drug and also how to refill the device. The surgeons can move the physical replicas of tools onto the physical replica of the human eye, which also appear digitized in the headset, to simulate the act of surgery. "Virtual reality is really going to make sure that every surgeon is as ready as they possibly can be to perform these surgeries," Dr. Brittain said.
  2. Twisted Kidney

    Twisted Kidney 2[H]4U

    Mar 18, 2013
  3. filip

    filip [H]ard|Gawd

    Aug 15, 2012
    So these guys are playing surgeon simulator before doing it on people, LOL.
  4. MV75

    MV75 [H]ard|Gawd

    Nov 13, 2007
    Cannot replicate the feel. Real model training cannot be competed with. No way a vr only trained person will go anywhere near my eyes.
  5. steakman1971

    steakman1971 2[H]4U

    Nov 22, 2005
    Training simulators are nothing new in the medical world. They eventually work on cadavers. (Although I don't know about this company - I'm making an assumption with them)
    I agree with you - VR training would not be enough.
  6. Skillz

    Skillz [H]ard DCOTY 2017

    Aug 14, 2004
    Guess you all missed the part where they previously had to learn on patients.
    cageymaru and GoldenTiger like this.
  7. socK

    socK 2[H]4U

    Jan 25, 2004