NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) - New technology coming to North Texas surgical centers could revolutionize how and where we see surgery.
"We used to have to have big cameras and a whole video crew to show what we were doing in the operating room," explained Dr. Robert Scheinberg, an orthopedic surgeon at Texas Institute for Surgery in North Dallas. "Now, we just use the same equipment we have. We push a button and it's all captured and it's there."
And 'there', thanks to the tremendous power of the internet, is 'everywhere' -- happening in real time.
"We can either capture them in the CLOUD, or we can stream them live, or both," Dr. Scheinberg said.
The software, called 'StreamingOR', is the creation of Dallas entrepreneur Clayton Redmon.
Redmon says the software allows patients to replace a paper trail with video documentation of their surgeries. He hopes the ability to request such a video will one day be a part of the Patient's Bill of Rights.
"Whether that's a hip arthroscopy or a heart procedure," he said.
On Tuesday, Dr. Scheinberg performed cutting edge hip surgery on a student-athlete and the procedure happened while her trainer watched remotely on a laptop computer.
The goal was to have University of Texas at Arlington athletic trainer Jed Stratton start planning his patient's rehabilitation, based on how the surgery unfolded.
"It directly affects the quality of the patient care," Stratton said. "I'm able to know what went on and know what restrictions she may have. It just gives you knowledge that you wouldn't have otherwise."
Stratton said the software is also a tremendous learning tool; whether those logged on to watch the procedures are medical residents or future trainers.
A class of UTA Kinesiology students logged on to watch the hip repair and ask questions as the surgery progressed.
Supporters say the software will likely have implications in the world of medicine ranging from the ease of securing second opinions, to insurance, to eliminating the need for additional surgeries in exploratory cases.
Dr. Scheinberg says he's fielded questions from as far away as Africa.
"Rather than them having to send the patients here, they can have a video chat at the same time with doctors that are thousands and thousands of miles away, and say 'look, this is what I have. How would you approach that?' So, I think the technology and what you do with it is endless."
The Texas Institute for Surgery was the first medical facility in North Texas to use StreamingOR, but its creator said more hospitals are adding the service.
Patients can request that their procedure be streamed or make contact with Stream Venue Healthcare directly.
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