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Guantes electrónicos ayudan a transferir el conocimiento de los cirujanos expertos a los estudiantes

Investigadores de la Universidad de Western Sydney, en consulta con el Hospital de Liverpool, han desarrollado herramientas para ayudar a los cirujanos en formación a dominar procedimientos quirúrgicos complejos.

Gough Lui, ingeniero biomédico del Instituto MARCS para el Cerebro, el Comportamiento y el Desarrollo de Western, ha trabajado en estrecha colaboración con el Hospital de Liverpool durante varios años. En una de estas sesiones, el Decano Clínico y Profesor de la Fundación de Cirugía y Cirugía Colorrectal, el Profesor Les Bokey, discutió con Lui la posibilidad de capacitar a los cirujanos de una manera más objetiva y basada en la evidencia para garantizar una competencia basada en la evidencia.

Un gran obstáculo es que las habilidades quirúrgicas necesarias ahora son más complejas que en décadas anteriores. Los cirujanos deben dominar la cirugía abierta, la cirugía mínimamente invasiva con cámaras y la cirugía robótica, por ejemplo. Pero mientras las técnicas han avanzado, los métodos de enseñanza no han cambiado mucho. Durante el entrenamiento, un cirujano experimentado observa por encima del hombro del estudiante y le da retroalimentación.

Un avance positivo en la capacitación ha sido que los estudiantes ahora pueden practicar en simuladores. Pero estos son enormemente costosos, y los aprendices en los hospitales típicos rara vez tienen fácil acceso.

Para resolver el problema, Lui ha desarrollado guantes quirúrgicos que contienen componentes electrónicos para registrar los movimientos sutiles, rápidos y controlados de las manos de los cirujanos expertos. Cuando los usan los estudiantes, los guantes pueden monitorear cómo los movimientos de sus manos difieren de los de los expertos. Lui espera que los guantes eventualmente se combinen con una aplicación de teléfono inteligente, para que los alumnos puedan practicar tareas en casa, por tan solo 100 euros, una fracción del costo de un simulador.

Crear los guantes perfectos es un trabajo en progreso. Al principio, Lui colocó componentes electrónicos en la parte posterior del guante para detectar la aceleración y la orientación de la mano, y agregó sensores de fuerza en las yemas de los dedos. Pero cirujanos experimentados informaron que reducían su sensibilidad al tacto y eran demasiado voluminosos, lo que dificultaba el movimiento. Lui ha buscado alternativas, incluido el uso de sensores de fuerza más arriba en el antebrazo y sensores de movimiento en el dorso de la mano para una versión mejorada.

Lui está trabajando en la mejor manera de dar instrucciones útiles a los alumnos. Los guantes recopilan datos de movimiento y los transmiten a una pantalla, donde se visualizan incluso los nervios más pequeños. Esto puede distraer a los estudiantes que se concentran en tareas difíciles. Las alternativas incluyen comentarios ‘hápticos’ (el zumbido de las yemas de los dedos) o comentarios de audio para guiar a los alumnos por el camino correcto. Pero Lui es cauteloso en caso de que los estudiantes se vuelvan demasiado dependientes de la tecnología.

Más información: Universidad de Western Sydney

61 thoughts on “Guantes electrónicos ayudan a transferir el conocimiento de los cirujanos expertos a los estudiantes

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