Medicine is full of some pretty incredibly complex skills that, after years of practice, become so second-nature to the experienced practitioner that it frankly looks easy to everyone else.
As anyone at the start of their career knows, though, believing any procedure to be easy is akin to inviting failure when you have to do it yourself.
In anesthesia, one such skill is the placement of a dual-lumen endotracheal tube. Usually involving complex patients, the teaching of this procedure is generally in a pretty high-risk and high-stress environment – true of many other medical procedures.
The brainchild of Thoracic anesthesiologist Dr. Kraidin, the Double Lumen app was created to help anesthesiologists (of all levels) practice a unique technique in a stress-free environment and is a great example of how a mobile technology can address the niche needs that physicians find every day.
Upon opening the app, the interface is quite basic. There are 3 choices: information (which explains how to use the app), teaching (with a brief video overview of 4 airway intubation videos), and the simulator, which is the bulk of the app, containing 18 simulation videos for practice.
The app guides the user through the simulations, by letting the user control whether they want to push the tube further, pull it back, view through the other lumen, and when the position seems correct. There are humorous responses to the correct and incorrect answers, including a musical aspect (when the sound is activated).
For correct placement, the app will play a recognizable upbeat Mariachi-style sound; for incorrect placement it will play the classic Debbie-Downer “womp womp” sound.
The video is surprisingly clear on the iPhone, but as expected, the larger size of the video on the iPad obviously helps. The time and effort put into creating this app is noticeable, as the precise functionality is quite impressive.
There are a few reviews (mostly by anesthesiology residents it seems) proclaiming that the product is a welcome item in the realm of medical apps. Others that may find benefit from the app are pulmonologists, but that would be on a very limited scale.
- $4.99 from the App Store
- Unique simulator experience
- Humorous aspects (from title screen through musical confirmations)
- Interface is very basic, and could be improved
- Teaching would have benefited from even a quick overview of bronchial anatomy/images
- The app is a niche product in the world of medical apps, and is tailored specifically at Anesthesiologist. It was created to help with a required skill for their field.
Find this app on iTunes