Doctors use Kinect in the operating system, sorry theatre

Quacks at Sunnybrook Hospital in Toronto have been using Microsoft’s Kinect in the operating theatre. Doctors like the Kinect, as we have reported before. And before.

If the thought of lots of surgeons dancing around like idiots while an Xbox grades them on their ability to do an operation puts you off ever having an operation again, be assured that they are doing it in the name of modern medicine.

According to the Winnepeg Free Press  the quacks are using the device to virtually manipulate key medical images during surgery.

A surgeon uses hand gestures to zoom in and out of the images or to freeze a particular shot without ever leaving the operating table. It also means that you don’t have to get blood on your keyboard.

At the moment surgeons usually have to leave the sterile field set up around the patient to pull up MRIs or CT scans on a nearby PCs.

After they have looked at all the images they have to go through a 20 minute clean up before returning to the area to commence surgery. Of course a lot can happen in 20 minutes.

The Kinect was adapted by Dr. Calvin Law, who helped integrate the technology into the operating room. The Kinect eliminates delays and reduces the chance of contamination.

For a cancer surgeon, that could mean saving more healthy tissue when removing a tumour.

It has been used six times so far and was so successful that there are plans to use it in other parts of the hospital. We guess it is popular because it makes senior surgeons look very silly.

Microsoft has commented saying it’s happy to see the product put to different uses, “as long as they’re not [using it] for video games” which is odd really as that was what we thought it was supposed to be used for.