Dr. Rafael Grossmann reached out to us on Twitter yesterday to let us know about how he used Google Glass while he was performing a surgical procedure on a patient.
Before anyone starts to get palpitations, he did get consent and kept the patient’s anonymity.
He made a Google hangout between his Glass and a Google account he created. This enabled him to link his Glass to his iPad, which was the receiver. The surgical procedure he performed was the placement of a PEG tube.
One of the interesting things Grossmann did was try to connect the glass to the endoscopic view he was getting.
This is essential for teaching and also potential intraoperative consultation. Obviously, to those of us in medicine, we know the placement of a PEG tube is extremely routine and you wouldn’t need a consultation for this while in the OR — but for more complicated operative procedures this could be very interesting.
While Grossmann focused on teaching and intraoperative consultations, I think the most interesting aspect of Glass is the ability for remote links to underserved areas. One of the biggest barriers to this is the ability to have a dedicated internet connection—though, with Google testing out WiFi blimps in Africa, reality might be closer than we think.
Either way, I don’t think we’re too far off from your phone pinging you with your surgical colleague asking you to take a look at a patient in the OR for a second opinion.
Here is a video of what Dr. Grossmann did: (Editors note: It appears Dr. Grossmann has made the video private since we originally published this post — we’ll ask him if there is a way for our users to access it)