Doctors Use Apps To Improve Outcome Of Surgeries

Doctors Use Apps To Improve Outcome Of Surgeries

Touch Surgery helps patients improve their mental state by walking them through the actual procedure thereby reducing stress levels.

John Pugh, BI
  • 21 april 2013

Regardless of how minor a surgery is, it’s only natural for a patient to get stressed out about going under the knife. Fluorescent lights, stainless steel and the fear of the unknown can lead to many a sleepless night leading up to an operation. But rather than prescribing a mild sedative to calm your nerves, today’s doctors might suggest you you fire up an iPad app instead.

Touch Surgery is an application designed to take some of the mystery out of medical procedures by letting users experience the surgery beforehand, albeit virtually. The app offers free, downloadable ‘modules’ that depict common operations such as cholecystectomy or appendectomy using video and computer-based simulations, helping patients and their families understand what to expect from an upcoming procedure.

touch surgery 2

A patient’s mental state is important before surgery, and in fact may contribute to improved outcomes and shorter hospital stays. Apps such as Touch Surgery allow patients to visualize the steps of the operation in visual detail, taking the mystery and fear away from the actual procedure. Jean Nehme, who developed the project with fellow surgeons Andre Chow, Sanjay Purkayastha and Advait Gandhe, commented on its potential impact:

We’ve found that it really improves patient comprehension and reduces anxiety, and people are getting out of hospitals faster. Once upon a time, the surgeon was god, but now it’s more of a shared partnership.

The app can also be used to help surgeons familiarize themselves with the steps associated with a specific operation, filling in training gaps or providing a refresher on less common procedures. Overall, this can improve patient safety by giving surgeons more confidence and providing a means of safe training and assessment before a scalpel and set of forceps ever comes into contact with an actual patient’s body.

Each operation begins with the theatre set-up: choosing your preferred kind of operating table, arranging your patient into position, and applying appropriate drapes. Then the tools come out, and each step is performed by correctly positioning a green circle over the pink ‘operation zone,’ with the procedure animated in real-time as you swipe your finger across the screen.

touch surgery 3

As a means of spreading best practices and drilling procedural steps into trainee surgeons’ minds, Touch Surgery offers a radical new model for the profession. For patients, the app has the potential to have a positive impact on overall patient satisfaction as well as patient outcomes.

Touch Surgery

PSFK has partnered with Boehringer Ingelheim to bring you a steady stream of inspiring news and ideas in the health and wellness space. Once each week, we will be posting an article on If you would like to gain access to the full stream of content, please check out Boehringer Ingelheim’s Facebook page, where they are publishing a regular stream of inspiring and informative content.


Brand Engagement At The Gates Of The World's Largest Open-Air Gallery

Asia Today

Safe Drivers Rewarded In Japan With Free Coffee

Driving Barista is a new app that encourages Japanese motorists to put their phones down as they drive

Arts & Culture Today

Michael Kors Has Designed Their Own Instant Camera

In a partnership with Fuji, the limited edition Instax Mini 70 comes in an exclusive metallic gold color


Get PSFK's Related Report: Future of Automotive

See All
Health Today

Manage Your Emotional Health Through Your Phone

Pharmaceutical company Pfizer has created a new iOS app meant to help patients track mental progress and set goals

Food Today

Delete Food Pics Off Of Instagram To Feed The Hungry

Land O'Lakes and Feeding America are donating meals for every picture of a meal taken off of the social platform

Design & Architecture Today

This Shape-Shifting Pod Could Be The Future Of The Cubicle

MIT and Google have designed a new form of work enclosure meant to offer privacy in open-office layouts

Advertising Today

Billboard Spies On People As They Walk By

To promote the movie "Snowden," the advertisement broadcasts information on passersby without their knowledge

Fashion Today

Anti-Pollution Scarf Helps Cyclists Ride Through Cities

An innovative system filters pollutants and its accompanying app monitors quality of the air


Future Of Automotive
Scenarios Driving The Digital Transformation Of An Industry

PSFK Op-Ed Today

Energy Expert: How American Consumers Are Taking Control Of Their Power Use

Jennifer Tuohy, green tech expert at The Home Depot, discusses green home technologies and developments for renewable technologies in US homes

PSFK Labs Today

New Mentorship Ecosystems Benefit All Levels Of An Organization

PSFK’s Future of Work report explores how technology is being leveraged to support cross-team communication

Automotive Today

Volvo’s Self-Driving Trucks Will Soon Be Put To Work In An Underground Mine

The fully-automated vehicles are part of a development project to help improve safety for workers

Work Today

Editorial Roundtable: How Will Companies Staff The Workplace Of The Future?

Managed By Q, Soma, Workbar, Primary, AltSchool and thinkPARALLAX examine the ways that a people-first workplace might disrupt the job hiring process

Arts & Culture Today

Mischievous Drone Will Drop Paint-Filled Balloons On Targets Of Your Choosing

A German photography team developed the flying device to accurately deliver a payload wherever needed

Retail Today

Snapchat Reveals A Striking Pair Of Video-Recording Sunglasses

Spectacles make memories from your perspective and transfer them to the app


Future Of Work
Cultivating The Next Generation Of Leaders

Financial Services Today

This Peer-To-Peer Insurance Company Is Powered By Bots

Lemonade is a new product designed to lighten the paperwork and provide instant, helpful service when needed

Design Today

Concept Artists And Scientists Form Partnership To Visualize The Future

The collaboration hopes to liberate ideas and innovations trapped in notebooks

Automotive Today

Uber Could Be Bringing Vertical Takeoff Transport To Your City

The ridesharing app is looking into the development of nimble aircraft for urban environments

No search results found.