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Gaming with surgical precision

by Zaid Kriel (Zaid)  Posted Thursday, November 22, 2012 10:51:01 AM

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A study by the University of Texas Medical Branch challenged a group of surgeons and teenagers that game regularly to perform robotic-surgery simulations. The result? The gamers showed the same skill level as the professionals, a few even doing better.

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As reported by Slate, the teenagers, who all play games for on average of about two hours a day, kept pace with their professionally trained rival with little trouble. Of the kids that performed to the highest degree, most of those reportedly played mainly shooters - with the Call of Duty franchise specifically singled out - and sports games; games which traditional require steady, yet rapid hand movements.

The study measured the participants aptitude with common surgical tasks, such as suturing, including the tension they put on their instruments and their overall hand-eye coordination. The high school students did best, followed by the college group that was also part of the study, followed by the medical professionals.

The results shouldn't be too surprising, given that the test did involve robotic-surgery simulations, or laparoscopic surgery, and not surgery in actual operating rooms. Still, the irony that a game series like Call of Duty could be teaching people life saving skills is hard not to point out.

Source: Slate

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