Doctors have successfully managed to restore blood flow in the blocked right coronary artery of a 49-year-old male patient with the help of Google's wearable headset powered by Android. However, this is not the first time when virtual reality has been used for healthcare, it is already being used to train physicians and for diagnosis. It also has the potential for treatment.
The group of cardiologists from the Institute of Cardiology in Warsaw, Poland, who restored blood flow of the patient, were assisted by CTA (coronary computed tomography angiography) projections in a virtual reality device based on the Google Glass.
"This case demonstrates the novel application of wearable devices for display of CTA data sets in the catheterisation laboratory that can be used for better planning and guidance of interventional procedures, and provides proof of concept that wearable devices can improve operator comfort and procedure efficiency in interventional cardiology," explained Maksymilian P. Opolski, lead investigator at the Institute of Cardiology.
Chronic total occlusion is a blockage of the coronary artery which is referred as "final frontier in interventional cardiology" as it represents a major challenge for heart surgery.
Opolski believes that wearable devices bear the potential for the treatment of restoring blood flow. "Furthermore, wearable devices might be potentially equipped with filter lenses that provide protection against X-radiation. We believe wearable computers have a great potential to optimize percutaneous revascularization, and thus favorably affect interventional cardiologists in their daily clinical activities," added Opolski.