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VR Tech is Changing the Way We Look at Health

Morgan Hatfield, Social Media Intern, Consumer Technology Association
Being in a hospital for any type of visit is stressful. Researchers are finding that bringing VR tech into the hospital can help alleviate a little, and in some cases, a lot of that stress and pain.

In the case of one patient with Crohn’s disease, getting an IV proved to be a difficult task for the nurse. Rather than feeling the sting of multiple needle pricks, he was given a VR headset programmed to immerse him at Yellowstone National Park, enjoying the nature. He instantly relaxed which helped the nurse find a vein for the IV quickly.

One younger patient was injured while driving a go-kart and hospitalized for the many open wounds he had. When it came time for the nurses to change his dressings, the 10-year-old would become so anxious about the pain that they often times had to sedate him. Once the VR headset was on though, his happy distraction was embarking on deep sea adventures. His mom noted how thankful she was that with VR, the doctors were putting one less medication into his system.

Another patient was going into labor with her second child. She initially requested having a natural childbirth without an epidural, but as time went on, her fear was increasing and her pain tolerance was on the decline. Instead of giving her an epidural, the doctor suggested trying VR to sooth and distract her in between contractions. She agreed and claims it not only helped calm her down, but also took away the anxiety. She gave birth without an epidural and felt thankful to have had the VR distraction for the pain.

 Some hospitals are even using VR to relieve the stress of doctors by facilitating with the planning of a complex surgery. The ability to visualize custom 3D models of organs and bodies from digital scans has given a more individualized approach to medicine.

 Watch the VR pain relief in action:

To see the latest in VR and health technology, mark your calendars for CES 2019, January 8-11.