Gamers Make Better Surgeons

Gamers Make Better Surgeons


It's official: Playing videogames adds +5 to your surgical skills.

For the past few years, story after story after story has come out, talking about how videogames are useful teaching tools. Now, it turns out that videogames are apparently a great way to train surgeons.

Nick Bilton of the New York Times Bits Blog has a new book called I Live in the Future and Here's How It Works. Within it is a chapter titled "Why Surgeons Play Video Games" where - according to Bilson - the latest research shows a lot of data supporting the theory that surgery skills increase when a doctor happens to be a gamer:

A few years ago, researchers quizzed more than thirty surgeons and surgical residents on their video game habits, identifying those who played video games frequently, those who played less frequently, and those who hardly played at all. Then they put all the surgeons through a laparoscopic surgery simulator, in which thin instruments akin to extremely long chopsticks are inserted into one or more small incisions through the skin along with a small camera that is inserted into an additional small opening. Minimally invasive surgery like this frequently is used for gallbladder removal, gynecologic procedures, and other procedures that once involved major cutting and stitching and could require hours on an operating table.

The researchers found that surgeons or residents who used to be avid video game players had significantly better laparoscopic skills than did those who'd never played. On average, the serious game players were 33 percent faster and made 37 percent fewer errors than their colleagues who didn't have prior video game experience.

The more video games the surgeons had played in the past, the better their numbers.

Additionally, Bilton notes that researchers at Arizona State University have followed surgical residents, some of whom trained for laparoscopic surgery by using a game called Marble Mania (along with a custom Wii remote). It turns out that the game-playing students made 47% fewer mistakes than others, and performed their surgeries up to 39% faster.

Note to self: When I move later this week and start searching for a new doctor, be sure to choose an office with a game console in the waiting room.

Source: Wired and BoingBoing, via io9


I thought this was really old?

I remember quite a few years ago reading about how some surgeons who played a few games before surgery was better than those who didn't.

I remember this story years ago. I think it's old news.

So, what you're saying is...Fallout 3 wasn't lying? But instead of leafing through a magazine to get +2 to Medicine, I play a game? Well, that's an even trade.

The only place I know with a game console in its waiting office/commons area is there is one in the kids waiting room at a hospital I went to when I found out I had ulcers instead of appendicitis. And even then, they had a dream cast (and a really worn looking one too).

They didnt even have seaman, or soul Cal.

But OT, this feels like I've read this before with the other articles around the time that all those articles about the benefits of gaming came out.

Now see, I kept telling my friend I was qualified to remove his tonsils, but he wouldn't believe me. I'm sure he'll let me now!

*Puts on welding mask and revs up chainsaw*

I honestly hope I don't get a gamer to do surgery on me. I don't need the doctor thinking my pancreas is spawn-camping, or something.

I could probably find over thirty convicted felons (violent) who play videogames too... just sayin.

I recently read an article that said that gamers can actually manage to stay fit and look awesome better than the average person or non-gamer. Why? Gamers can stay focused on a task for hours, they're determined, they always strive to reach their goal, they're always looking for a new challenge, etc.

So...I guess we could all become buff, handsome surgeons. Yay, video games! 8D

So I'll remember to ask my doctor quite abruptly during a conversation about my health how he feels about Skyrim. Not only will we have something neat to talk about I'll have the assurance that he's also a really good doctor.

*Snaps rubber gloves on*

Let's do this...

A stat perk that comes as quest reward!


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