Diagnostics Future Tech Theraputics

Apple purchases augmented-reality glasses startup

From Becker’s:

Augmented reality enables a device — in this case, a set of glasses — to overlay digital information on the real world.

Source: Apple purchases augmented-reality glasses startup

Augmented reality is one of those technologies that holds so much potential yet has yet to take hold in any substantial way.

There are many potential uses for augmented reality in medicine and dentistry. At the most basic level the surgeon could use it to pull up the patients medical history or a procedure check list which he or she could review  – hands free – on the glasses with out needing to look away or touch a mouse. Slightly more advanced the surgeon or assistant could monitor the patients vitals while continuing to stay focused on the surgical site. (BTW I am of course including dental procedures in the generic surgical site example.)

At an even higher level the surgeon could see the patients bones and vessels, as determined by a 3D scan, superimposed on the actual patient as he/she does the surgery. This could be combined with a device like X-Nav  for real time guided implant placement.

A few years ago Google famously pushed Google Glass which made a splash then quietly went away. Facebook has Occulous Rift which so far remains mostly a gaming device. With Apple entering the arena we may see some movement toward true augmented reality in medicine. However so far it remains a tantalizing vision.